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 (11:05 AM)
Football weekend kicks off tonight and I hope the action on the gridiron takes over for the controversy of the Miamis and Ohio State. This signals the summer is over and football is here. It should offset the negativim. Then college hoops will be here and it is going to be so exciting because we will have a lot of legitimate, big-time teams.
Do you think all of the shifts in the big 12 have effected the Jayhawk's recruiting? This seems to be one of the weaker classes they've had in a long time. Thanks!
Dick Vitale (11:07 AM)
No I don't think tht has anything to do with it. Sometimes you don't hit grand slams but Kansas will do fine. Sometimes it runs in cycles. They have spoiled some people. A lot of times highly-recruited players don't live up to their billing anyway. Kansas has a great coach and great tradition and will do just fine.
Aaron S. (Arkansas)
How many games do you see the Zags winning this season with their annually brutal non-conference schedule (including Mich. St., Butler, ND, Arizona, Illinois, Xavier, etc.) and with the addition of BYU into the WCC? Also is this the year that Elias Harris finally busts out as a star?
Dick Vitale (11:09 AM)
Gonzaga will play a lot of great teams because the conference schedule doesn't give them as much recognition even adding BYU. Playing big-timers is a tremendous plus and Mark Few has done a great job with this program. I think Harris will have a solid season and this team will still compete to win 20 games, even with the rugged schedule. Butler and Gonzaga can reach out and the big-timers will play them and those schools take advantage of that opportunity to face great competition.
T.J. (Norman, OK)
Hey Dickie V, Mr. Hall of Famer! Got a question:There's no doubt you're a phenomenal commentator & enthusiast for college basketball. Deep down though, I've got to wonder if "the coaching bug" still exists. Is there a potential coaching job that, if offered, you'd take...and if so, where?
Dick Vitale (11:11 AM)
First of all, let's face it, that will not happen. I do get a coaching urge but I satisfy that working my grandkids in the backyard. I have been working as a coach on TV and I have not lost in 32 years. TV doesn't provide the incredible high ofa big win or the low of a tough loss and I do miss that moment of trying to outmaneuver your opponent. While I have missed that over the years, I will not coach again. If I was in my 40s, I would think about it.
Your thoughts on Bruce Pearl leaving coaching fof now and will he ever come back to the sidelines?
Dick Vitale (11:12 AM)
I do think he will come back eventually. People pay a price for his mistakes and he has a lot of positives. Sitting out and being in the business world is a good decision. He has grea motivational skills and gets so much out of his teams and I hope someone will give him another chance down the line.
Tim Johnson (monroe,ohio)
The Big East looks to be a really strong conference this year.Where do you think Cincinnati ranks with all those great teams?
Dick Vitale (11:15 AM)
They have an outstanding club based on potential but the league is so tough...it is going to be a war but Cincinnati has a shot to finish in the upper division and that would mean an automatic invite to the NCAA. I think Mick Cronin will get a big year out of Yancy Gates. When you have Connecticut, Syracuse, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame and others in the conference is very tough.
How has your summer been. hqve you been having a good time. Get back to work soon baby!
Dick Vitale (11:16 AM)
Absolutely a phenomenal summer. It doesn't get better than goign to Rome and meeting the Pope. The Bucket List wish was answered. I ran into Hoop Anonymous and I need some hoops, baby!
How sad is this Crittenton story? I know you called his games at Georgia Tech and he had some talent, but I cannot believe this has happened. I was surprised when the Arenas thing happened and now this...
Dick Vitale (11:19 AM)
Just tragic for the young lady, an innocent woman who was killed. It will play out in the courts but some guys don't understand about making good decisions. It is as bad as it gets shooting off a gun. Family, kids will miss her. People who loved him suffer too. Some people don't understand celebrity status and cannot handle fame and fortune. It is all about decision making. If you make good ones, positive things will happen. Others party, go drinking at bars and nothing good comes from it.
Dick! Arizona = National Champs in: a) 2012-2013, b) 2013-2014, c) both
Dick Vitale (11:20 AM)
Sean Miller has a great recruiting class so they could win it all down the line. Arizona added a great point guard who committed for 2012 and they have one of the great classed comign in. They will return to the glory days of Lute Olson.
Dick Who do you think wins it all this year?
Dick Vitale (11:21 AM)
Right now I am picking Carolina to cut down the nets. I like Kentucky, Connecticut and Ohio State in my Final Four. Calipari's team is so tough at home, has not lost at Rupp Arena. Andre Drummond changes the landscape a bit as the Huskies move up to #3 in my rankings. My new Super Seven should be out today.
What do you think of Michigan State this season?
Dick Vitale (11:23 AM)
I think they will have better chemistry and togetherness. They never got into a rhythm last season and I think this club will rally. I think Tom Izzo has too much pride and I cannot weait to see the opener on 11-11-11 in San Diego on the ship facing the number one team in the nation with Harrison Barnes, John Henson and Tyler Zeller. Roy Williams' teams picked creme de la creme seem to respond like they have in the past.
Calhoun fan (Connecticut)
How lucky is he that Drummond is coming this year?
Dick Vitale (11:26 AM)
It is lucky for Connecticut fans and Jim Calhoun. Not lucky for opponents because Drummond can team up with Alex Oriakhi. Jeremy Lamb could average 20 ppg. Kemba Walker gave me a scouting report on Twitter and he said Drummond is special in the low post. Shabazz Naiper's development could be a key.
Any breakout CAA teams this year?
Dick Vitale (11:27 AM)
I think George Mason and VCU will be very good again. Paul Hewitt is fortunate to inherit a good team. This is a very underrated conference that has very good basketball.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Who do you think will be the best Rookie Basketball player in the NBA if there is a season in 2011-2012?
Dick Vitale (11:28 AM)
Let us see if there is a season, baby!
Dick Vitale (11:32 AM)
I am so excited about this weekend at Notre Dane. I will be near the South Florida bench but this is the one time I am not rooting for them. My two daughters and son-in-laws went to South Bend. I am excited to be bringing the Metille family there and it should be a great weekend. It should be a great game and a great season as I think Brian Kelly will do a super job there.
Why is Kentucky ranked ahead of UCONN? We have a superstar at nearly every position, with the best big man in college now!
Dick Vitale (11:32 AM)
I think Kentucky has a lot of potential with the best recruiting class coming in plus the return of Terrence Jones and Doron Lamb.
Will the ACC be more than a 2 team conference this year? It seems the last few years, Duke and UNC have really held up the conference.
Dick Vitale (11:34 AM)
A lot of people have North Carolina and Duke in the top echelon but we have to see which other teams develop int he conference. I think Florida State has the potential to be very good. Teams like Virginia, Virginia Tech, Clemson and Miami can surprise some people. You are right that those top two teams should dominate the conference but others could step up and fare pretty well.
Dick Vitale (11:38 AM)
I have a thought for basketball fans. I would love to see an all-star game during the lockout. We just had players getting in a good run at Morgan State the other night. I would love to see an all-star lineup play for pediatric cancer research, for the V Foundation. Guys like Magic Johnson and Shaq could coach, and players like LeBron, D Wade, Carmelo and Chris Paul could get guys together and it would be a lot of fun. Maybe Van Gundy or Bakley could coach too. I am also excited about September 30th at The Brownstone in Patterson, NJ at a dinner for the V Foundation. That is where the Manzo Family from the Real Housewives run the restaurant. For tickets call The V Foundation at 1-800-4-jimmy-v. My buddy, former Giant Tom Longo is the committee chair and it should be a great night. See you next week.