Commentary

Roundball Chatter

Updated: August 29, 2011, 12:25 PM ET
By Dick Vitale | ESPN.com

Each week I'll write about the sport I love, college basketball:

• Big news for the defending national champions. Andre Drummond, one of the best big men in America, has decided to play for the Huskies and will be eligible for the upcoming season. Wow, that really changes things in my top 10. Connecticut is now a top five team! The 6-11 center was projected as the No. 2 player by recruiting gurus for 2012, but he opted to skip a prep school and go right to Storrs.

• It has not been an easy time for new Miami coach Jim Larranaga. The Hurricanes' program has been hurt by the Nevin Shapiro situation. Reggie Johnson, a star up front, had surgery for a torn miniscus. Now veteran forward-center Julian Gamble has been lost for the season with a torn ACL. Gamble started 13 games for Miami last season.

• Please say a prayer for Pat Summitt as she is faced with her biggest challenge. The news of her battle with dementia came as a total shock. She is planning on coaching this season and everyone wishes her the best.

• Memphis coach Josh Pastner is a rising star. He made a very creative and positive move by adding Luke Walton to his coaching staff during the lockout! Having Walton and Damon Stoudamire around should help the young Tiger squad.

• BYU has reinstated forward Brandon Davies. The 6-9 Davies was given a season-ending suspension last year due to a violation of the school's honor code. We live in a forgiving society and I am glad this young man is getting another chance.

• Mississippi State took action and freshman D.J. Gardner was dismissed by coach Rick Stansbury for "repeated actions deemed detrimental to the team." Gardner was reportedly upset about being redshirted and expressed his displeasure on Twitter.

• Good news in Happy Valley as new Penn State coach Patrick Chambers has picked up a key piece of the puzzle. Former Southern Mississippi guard D.J. Newbill has opted to transfer to the Nittany Lions. The Philadelphia native averaged over nine points per game as a diaper dandy last season. He has to sit this year but he will definitely be a factor in the future.

• There must be joy in Hoosier Hoops country as Tom Crean has Indiana ranked number one in the recruiting battle for the class of 2012. That is according to our bretheren at ESPN.com, and Paul Biancardi and company do such a great job, working 24-7 on this.

• I love the thinking of ACC boss John Swofford as he claims the time has come to get the felons and not worry about the jaywalkers. Hooray for that thought, baby!

Dick Vitale

College Basketball analyst
Dick Vitale, college basketball's top analyst and ambassador, joined ESPN during the 1979-80 season. His thorough knowledge of the game is brought forth in an enthusiastic, passionate style. Vitale also contributes columns to ESPN.com.