Chat with Dick Vitale
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Dick Vitale stops by to chat some college basketball.
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.
Send your questions now and join Vitale Wednesday at 11 a.m. ET!
Dick Vitale (11:01 AM)
I love doing these chats as I really enjoy interracting with the fans. I dedicate this chat to one of my former players from East Rutherford, Duffy Alberta. He was a basketball fanatic who loset his battle with cancer 48 hours ago. Rest in peace my friend. He would join us if he was here.
Happy New Year Dickie V!!!! The SEC has 2 teams currently in the top 25, the Pac 10 has 0, the ACC has 1. Which conference do you think has been a bigger let down this season so far?
Dick Vitale (11:02 AM)
When you talk about the ASCC having one, Duke, it blows my mind. It has been one of the premier basketball conferences and by the end of the year North Carolina could be back in the top 25. I would have to say ACC.
Will Notre Dame contend? Is St John's for real? Or did those two teams just catch UConn and Gtown at bad times? Who is your Big East pick to go deepest in March?
Dick Vitale (11:04 AM)
I think both clubs are legit. St. John's has to be more consistent after the losses to Fordham and St. Bonnies. They have gone past those losses with the 3-0 Big East start, and uit is credit to Lavin and his staff. Notre Dame is legit and plays great defense. I spoke to Rick Barnes and he was impressed seeing some tape of the Irish. They have great experience and Mike Brey has done a great job.
Sally (New York)
Duke has 0 games left vs top 25 teams to play, while OSU has 5 and KU has 7. Do you see that as worrysome for Duke as the competition they face is worse than other top teams?
Dick Vitale (11:06 AM)
I don't believe so. They have faced quality teams already in Michigan State and Kansas State. Their concern is getting Kyrie Irving back before the season. Duke has the winner's mentality with Kyle Singler and Nolan Smith plus the inside play of Marshall Plumlee. We will see how Kansas fares against tougher competition on the road in the Big 12.
Joel (Niagara Falls/Buffalo) [via mobile]
Coach Vitale, Were you, as I was, a bit surprised to see the Baylor women jump to #1 in both polls ? Yes, there's the Stanford loss, but UConn had already defeated Baylor. An undefeated Duke at #1 right now seems to make more sense to me. What do you think ? Thank you. Go, Purple Eagles !
Dick Vitale (11:07 AM)
No not at all. The fact they played so tough at Connecticut, and the ratings and polls are all about what you have done lately.
Why can't Enes Kanter play basketball when the Ohio State kids get a free pass to play in the Sugar Bowl? It would be nice if the NCAA were consistent in their rulings, but it seems they are taking a hard line on Kanter, and going soft on the kids here in the U.S.On the otherhand, how about the improvement of Josh Harrelson?
Dick Vitale (11:09 AM)
Harrellson has been a major force on that Kentucky team, an asset from a guy who was All-Airport. I agree with you on Kanter as I wish it would not be all about procrastinating. I hope that mark Emmert's new regime will change things a bit and make quicker decisions.
Dick, what do you think of Indiana's 2012 recruiting class? Do you think they will be able to compete in the Big 10 right away?
Dick Vitale (11:09 AM)
On paper, it looks dynamite. I thought Indiana would have improved more this year and I felt there would be more progress this season. You have to do it on the floor and not just on paper.
Matt (New York)
Do you think it will ever be possible for a mid major or small school star to win the POY? Because although it looks like Jimmer Fredette and people of his caliber at other schools may be the best, their schedule and media attention doesn't allow for them to get the votes.
Dick Vitale (11:11 AM)
Very difficult in this day and age as visibility does play a part in that. Fredette is a super player and I am looking forward to BYU-UNLV tonight.
How do you think the UCF Knights will compete in the C-USA and will they make the NCAA tourney?
Dick Vitale (11:12 AM)
They will clearly compete. It would be a big fold job after the way they have started out. Donnie Jones has them energized and Marcus Jordan is one of the most improved players in the nation. The whole athletic program is on the rise...just ask Georgia of the SEC losing to the Knights in the bowl game.
Other than San Diego St. which school not from the power 6 six conferences do you see as a threat in March?
Dick Vitale (11:13 AM)
Good question. Gonzaga is getting better and better and their strength of schedule non-league is helping them in the long run. It is a team that would scare me playing them in the postseason.
Chad W. (Greensboro)
Recently, Buzz Williams and Marquette hosted a 15 year old young man named Spencer who is battling Ewing Sarcoma (cancer). They treated him like a King for the entire weekend! Spencer is averaging 15 points for his middle school while going through radiation. He is a Warrior!!! Thanks Dickie V to you and all the NCAA Coaches who do so much for Cancer Research! Question- Are there 8 teams in the Big East better than the second best team in the ACC?
Dick Vitale (11:15 AM)
Thanks for your kind words. Wow, you can make that case but I still believe North Carolina will turn the corner and battle Duke. The Tar Heels are too athletic and too talented not to improve. The Big East is clearly to me the best conference in the nation again. You have to lace them up every night or you are in major, major trouble.
Based on my understanding, guard Josh Selby of Kansas says that he is one-and-done in the NCAA. Do you think Josh will be ready to compete on the NBA level once he finishes his rookie season?
Dick Vitale (11:17 AM)
I don't even want to talk about that. Selby is getting a chance to play at a great program and he should be concerned about helping the Jayhawks compete for the national championship. These kids are often drafted on potential and Selby did have a 1-for-nine game recently.
Justin (Los Angeles)
How do you think the Louisville Cardinals will fare in the Big East now that they've been tested by UK? Of course they were dealing with injuries galore, but Siva didn't handle the pressure well and Knowles seems a bit streaky.
Dick Vitale (11:18 AM)
The loss of Rakeem Buckles is a blow. The loss to Kentucky is a loss to a top-notch team. Louisville has great depth but no stars. Rick Pitino is a master motivator who gets the most out of his personnel. Louisville will win a few games they shouldn't and will lose to a few teams they should beat.
Confuscion (Ft. Lauderdale)
How are you Coach? Is it me or did UConn Men's Top 10 ranking was from the Maui buzz more than their actual talent? Their non-conference was incredibly weak & they have not had a good start to Big East play.
Dick Vitale (11:20 AM)
Obviously beating Michigan state and Kentucky to win the Maui will get your ranking up. The teams that have beaten Connecticut have contained Kemba Walker like Notre Dame did last night. Connecticut is still one of the elite programs in America.
Marty (Purdue fan)
How about some love for the Boilermakers? No Hummel, no problem, baby!
Dick Vitale (11:21 AM)
I would not say no problem because Hummel is a special talent. Johnson and Moore have been as advertised, as they are prime-time talent.
Delma (Baton Rouge)
Dickie V - give me some news on the direction of Trent Johnson's LSU team... are things finally looking up on the Bayou?
Dick Vitale (11:22 AM)
It has been a tough season for LSU. Trent Johnson is a class act and in the long run he will turn things back around.
Sinny (Alexandria, VA)
Should Georgetown fans be concerned over the 1-2 start in the Big East?
Dick Vitale (11:23 AM)
Anytime you face the schedule like that, and you start 1-2, you should be concerned. If the goal is just to make the tourney, Georgetown will certainly do that. The Hoyas are clearly one of the best 68.
Hey Coach what do you think of Kentucky? I know they are a very young team but do you think their lack of depth will catch up with them in the long run? Oh and btw FREE ENES!!!
Dick Vitale (11:27 AM)
Kentucky will win a lot of games but it is diffucult to win a national title with the one and done. If you lose guys like Knight and Jones next year, it will be tough. Winning it all is a major dilemma. I think the kid Kanter is getting a raw deal. The NCAA has documentation of Cam Newton's father peddling his son's services, yet Kanter's father did all he could to get his kid to go to college,. His dad turned down millions and we can't work it out to have reimbursement. The kid wants an education or he would have taken the millions. He wants to be a student but why penalize him. It is time to make a decision here and keeping the player, family and school plus fans waiting is ludicrous. The Buckeye situation and those kids played. I think there is a legit complaint. Based on the NCAA, Newton's father tried to get money. Kanter turned down millions. It is about common sense. If you ran a business this way you would have major troubles.
DePaul fan here looking for something to get excited about. Melvin, Young and a good recruiting class in 2011 and Oliver?s system are getting me there. False hope or are we back in 3 or 4 years?
Dick Vitale (11:28 AM)
DePaul is improving as Oliver Purnell has done a nice job. The Blue Demons almost beat West Virginia last night and gave Georgetown a battle. Melvin and Young are youngsters who deserve some more ink.
Does last nights Ohio St game raise any questions about the Buckeyes?
Dick Vitale (11:30 AM)
Not really. When you go on the road, there will be competition. They did what they had to do, they won. They are legit and the best challenge to Duke. Every opponent will get up for you and even though Iowa is not a super team, the Hawkeyes certainly played well.
BYU @ UNLV. Who do you have for this one? Can Jimmer keep up with the young guns in the race for POY?
Dick Vitale (11:32 AM)
I have to give an edge at UNLV. Can they control Fredette? Possibly. Lon Kruger is a winner and a great teacher who has done a phenomenal job. UNLV has some quality wins. I also want to give some love to Dave Rose, a cancer survivor who has done a great job.
Dick Vitale (11:34 AM)
Rose is a perfect example of why I want to raise money to beat this dreaded disease. This is a tough day for me due to the passing of Duffy Alberta. He made the most of his life, a successful businessman. At the end he suffered with kidney failure and other issues. If you would like to help me, go to dickvitaleonline.com and I want to raise another $1 million for the V Foundation. Please help me out.
Justin (New Jersey)
Dicky v!!!!!!! Do you think Syracuse has hat it takes to cut down the nets in april? i keep changing my mind like when they played Notre Dame and Michigan State they looked as good as anyone in the country...but then they had close wins against teams like William & Mary and Michigan...They have a lot of great guys like Rick Jackson and Kris Joseph...What seed do you think they will get in the Big Dance.
Dick Vitale (11:36 AM)
Syracuse has a lot of potential and will compete for the national title. Scoop Jardine will be a factor as well as the guys you mentioned. This team has young depth and a guy like Southerland has been contributing too. You will have close calls like Michigan and William and Mary during the season but those were wins, baby!
Dickie V you are great man. It seems like you devote your life to helping others. You are a true hero in my eyes and I would like to thank you for being such a great person.
Dick Vitale (11:37 AM)
Thank you for your kind words. I truly appreciate them.
Brian (Little Rock, Arkansas)
Will Arkansas ever get it turned around? They were hammered pretty good at Texas.
Dick Vitale (11:38 AM)
John Pelphrey has a great recruiting class coming in. I think Arkansas will be able to turn things around and give credit to Texas for a solid performance last night. Jai Lucas had a very good game off the bench. Gary Johnson also shot well. I am looking forward to doing Texas-Connecticut this weekend.
Ben C (Mobile AL.)
What do you think of Tyler Zeller's play this year? He looks like one of the best big men in the country and could do more with better guard play around him.
Dick Vitale (11:40 AM)
Zeller has had a pretty good season. Guard play has been a concern the last two years, but as I said earlier, I really feel the Tar Heels will turn the corner.
Mark (Los Angeles)
What are your thoughts on USC? Kevin O'Neill is a good coach and I think the Trojans can surprise some people out west.
Dick Vitale (11:41 AM)
The addition of Jio Fontan. the transfer from Fordham, was a big-time positive. The Trojans have some talent up front and O'Neill's team can compete in the Pac-10. I atill like Washington to win the conference.
With all the attention giving to coach K passing the Dean and closing in on The General people seem to forget that Jim Boeheim is not far behind on the wins list. When it's all said and done who do think ends up with most wins?
Dick Vitale (11:42 AM)
I think Coach K will be the first man to win 1000 Division I games. Pat Summitt has already done that on the women's side. When all is said and done, Coach K will reach that milestone.
Dick Vitale (11:44 AM)
Thanks for all of your questions. I will be back again to chat next Thursday. I had to change my schedule this week due to the passing of my former player and close friend Duffy Alberta. It was a major loss. RIP my friend. See you next week at 11 am ET Thursday.