Chat with Dick Vitale
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, 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 Thursday at 11 a.m. ET!
Dick Vitale (11:04 AM)
I am really overwhelmed by the news that University of Detroit is honoring me by naming the court after me. It was one of the greatest thrills of my life. I am looking forward to that night as it willo really be special.
Terry (North Carolina)
Is Kyrie Irving the best player in this draft?
Dick Vitale (11:05 AM)
It will be a toss-up between Irving and Derrick Williams. Point guards are so valuable today and if you want to build a foundation that way, if you are Cleveland, you go with Irving number one.
Who is the Player of the Year entering next season, Sullinger or Barnes?
Dick Vitale (11:06 AM)
Right now I would say Sullinger is the leading guy. He will be a dominator in his second year in Columbus.
Dick, how do you see Hewitt fitting in at George Mason? Can he keep our program going in the right direction or am I going to really miss Coach Larranaga? Thanks.
Dick Vitale (11:09 AM)
Absolutely. He did a great job in the same scenario at Siena. He had so many kids leaving early at Georgia Tech, guys like Chris Bosh, Jarrett Jack and Derrick Favors. He was a victim of that. Hewitt will do fine at George Mason.
How lucky is Pat Knight to have a D-1 coaching job right away? How will be do at Lamar?
Dick Vitale (11:10 AM)
A lot of times you see guys getting the ziggy in college basketball and then they have to wait for another opportunity, or they become an assistant coach at Division I before they get another chance. In the case of Pat Knight, he was bale to rebound and get hired right away and he is in a scenario where he could do very well with the Cardinals.
Will Larranaga really win at Miami?
Dick Vitale (11:12 AM)
I think Jim Larranaga has the potential to do well down there. He had experience in the ACC as an assistant at Virginia years ago. He has that winner's mentality and he has connections down there in Florida. Just look at his track record at George Mason and I think he can succeed in the ACC.
Dickie V,How are my Blue Devils going to look next season?
Dick Vitale (11:14 AM)
I think North Carolina will be the favorite in the ACC next season but the Dukies will be right in the hunt. I know it is tough to lose Kyle Singler, Nolan Smith and Kyrie Irving, but having a diaper dandy like Austin Rivers plus Seth Curry with another season of experience under his belt, plus the Plumlees up front, Coach K will have a nice nucleus of talent.
Jonathon Spunar (Livonia, MI)
Will Michigan, even without Darius Morris, make the leap this season over Michigan State in-state and in the Big 10?
Dick Vitale (11:16 AM)
I think Michigan will probably be a top 15-20 team next season. I was surprised when Darius Morris stayed in the draft and we will see if he gets up to the first round. Tim Hardaway Jr. should have a big year in Ann Arbor. I like the job John Beilein did last season and the Wolverines almost knocked off Duke in the big dance. Michigan State should bounce back and I look for big things from Keith Appling too. They will both be looking uop at the Buckeyes in the Big Ten race, my friend.
How good can Pitt be without Brown, McGhee, and Wanamaker? Are they still realistic contenders?
Dick Vitale (11:18 AM)
The return of Ashton Gibbs was big for coach Jamie Dixon. I always feel Pittsburgh will be in the hunt in the Big East because Dixon does a great job developing players. He doesn't get the McDonald's All-Americans but his players go out and work so hard and play great defense and as a team.
Can you see the Indiana Hoosiers in the tourney this year?
Dick Vitale (11:19 AM)
This will be an important year for Tom Crean and he has a young man to keep an eye on...remember the name ZELLER! It will not be easy because the big Ten is going to be tough again, but I think you will see a lot of improvement in Bloomington. Hoosier fans should be happy with the way the team performs.
Hayden (San Diego)
How do you think Gonzaga and St. Mary's will compete with WCC newcomer BYU?
Dick Vitale (11:21 AM)
I am excited to see how those teams fare in the league now that BYU is in. Other teams will make some noise too so I think it will be a very competitive conference. We have to see how BYU fares without Jimmer.
Mark (San Diego)
Shouldn't the NCAA let Dwayne Polee play right away due to hardship because his mother is ill? There have been players allowed to play right away after transferring like Tyler Smith.
Dick Vitale (11:23 AM)
The NCAA should help out kids who are in difficult situations like this. His mother is ill and they should seriously think about letting him play for the Aztecs right away. As you said, there is some precedent there.
Eric (South Bend)
Hey Dick, Do you think the Big East will be strong this year and continue its run as the best conference in the country?
Dick Vitale (11:25 AM)
Yes, the Big East will be loaded again. Syracuse has a lot of talent back and a good class coming in. Defending national champion Connecticut, even without Kemba Walker, will be heard from. I mentioned Pittsburgh a bit earlier. Teams like Georgetown will always be around. Watch out for a tough Marquette team. St. John's is young and talented. Villanova, Notre Dame, come on, am I forgetting someone. The league will be very tough again, though the SEC up top has solid clubs like Kentucky, Florida, Alabama and Vanderbilt.
Dickie V, got to see you at the city of palms tournament this last december with my st patricks team! How big of a jump do you see Michael Gilchrist having with Kentucky this year and helping his NBA stock?
Dick Vitale (11:27 AM)
I think Gilchrist will be an instant impact diaper dandy. He will step in and be a VIP (very Important Player) for Big Blue and John Calipari. I was very impressed when I saw him in person down there.
D Rose (Chicago)
How do you think my boys in Memphis are going to do.
Dick Vitale (11:29 AM)
Josh Pastner has a lot of talent returning and a diaper dandy to watch in Adonis Thomas. Memphis will be the clear cut favorite in the league, Conference USA.
Dick Vitale (11:31 AM)
There should be a lot of celebrating in Boston and in Dallas. The Bruins wont he Staley Cup and the Mavericks were so exciting in the NBA finals. By the way, a message for Mark Cuban -- get them the rings, baby! You can't buy those, you have to earn them and the Dallas players did just that. Congrats to the Bruins and it may not be the only celebration in Boston this year. Josh Becket was incredible last night and the Red Sox look very, very tough. See you next week on NBA draft day.