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 (11:06 AM)
I am excited about March Madness. Selection Sunday is coming up. We had a sad situation yesterday but let's not throw them under the bus. They are good officials and they made a mistake. We need to get full-time officials, guys who do this for a living. How do we pay for this? Participating schools put dollars together to make it happen and the NCAA take some of the dollars from the tournament and set it aside for officiating. It would not totally eliminate problems but it would raise the status of blowing the whistle...guys are fired because of Ls and people have to be accountable.With the money at stake, you need guys who blow the whistle as a full-time occupation. The various conferences should put in money to the pot too. It would elevate the game and take it to a different level. These guys are good guys but their minds can be on other things and they should prioritize their efforts. Jim Burr and Tim Higgins are so passionate about doing the right thing. Enough about that.
Why was Kemba passed over for all the awards? UConn is winning not only with him, but because of him!
Dick Vitale (11:08 AM)
He started off so well and I think people rewarded the victors...Hansbrough came on so strong.
Dan (Marion NC)
Dick, which ACC team do you think could make some noise at the tournament in Greensboro? Also, who is your biggest suprise and disappointments of the season in the ACC?
Dick Vitale (11:09 AM)
Clemson could be a dangerous team. Virginia Tech has their backs against the wall and needs wins. Tech's collapse down the stretch was a major surprise.
Travis (Seattle WA)
How can Duke be considered a number 1 seed in the tourney? If you look at their body of work it's nothing remarkable. They've only beaten two teams in the current top 25. UNC and Kansas St. They're most quality non conference win is against a decent Marquette team. How do you put them ahead of a team like Notre Dame or even North Carolina if they're to win the ACC tourney?
Dick Vitale (11:10 AM)
I have Notre Dame as the one-seed right now. If Duke wins and beats UNC and the Irish lose early in the Big East there is a chance that the Blue Devils could be number one.
Rod Lowe (Macon Ga, Northeast High School, UGA Grad)
Georgia should be considered for an at-large bid considering there overall body of work, and strength of schedule, Kentucky, Florida, NotreDame, UAB, Colorado, Tenn, Miss St,Temple, Vanderbilt Xavier.......etc, not exactly a schedule full of patsies
Dick Vitale (11:11 AM)
Playing them all and beating them are two different things. They have to win some games in the SEC tournament to make it to the big dance in my opinion.
Demetri (San Diego)
Do you think UCLA has it to make a run at the Final Four? They beat BYU earlier this year with Jimmer and Davies.
Dick Vitale (11:12 AM)
Ben Howland has done a tremendous job raising their game. I see them potentially making it to the Sweet 16.
Who is the key player for Syracuse (besides Rick Jackson) that can not have an "off" night in the tourney?
Dick Vitale (11:13 AM)
I think they need great guard play from Jardine and Triche to be successful. I think their zone will make the athletic ability of St. John's struggle.
Cheesehead Sports Nut (Chicago, IL)
The Wisconsin Badgers always thrive in the regular season because they can impose their style of play on the opposition. For some reason that does not always translate into post season success. Do you think that will change this year with the emergence of a difference maker like Jordan Taylor?
Dick Vitale (11:15 AM)
The Badgers will do what they have done. They will have good shot selection, protect the basketball and play good defense. Bo Ryan always gets the most from his players and Wisconsin will be tough.
Michael Roanoke,VA [via mobile]
Why is it that Virginia Tech is always the last team left out when they clearly have a tougher conference schedule than all the cupcake ones? I remember they had a 10-6 conference record one year and teams below in the standings made it to the dance!
Dick Vitale (11:16 AM)
They don't have the wcheduling and they should have closed the deal right after the Duke win. That created a bubble situation when they lost a couple of games down the stretch.
Ed (Detroit, Mich.)
Can Izzo rally his team and get them into the tourney
Dick Vitale (11:17 AM)
They have to beat Iowa today and maybe two wins would get them lock city. If they lose to the Hawkeyes I feel that knocks them off the bubble. Schedule strength certainly helps them.
Thoughts on Herb Sendek now that the season is over?
Dick Vitale (11:18 AM)
The Sun Devils had a tough year but his track record has to be looked at. It was a frustrating year and obviously they have to improve next season.
Which mid major team could really do some damage in the Tournament?
Dick Vitale (11:19 AM)
Old Dominion, George Mason, Oakland, Butler, Belmont. These are quality teams that have some major wins.
Rich (New Jersey)
St. Peter's College the MAAC Tournament Champion defeated #1 seed Fairfield (24 wins) & # 2 seed Iona (22 wins). Do you think either Fairfield or Iona deserve some consideration from the NCAA Tournamet Committee?
Dick Vitale (11:19 AM)
I feel that they had good seasons, but I feel they both will make the NIT.
Hey Dick. What do you think is a best case scenario for Kansas State in the Big 12 and NCAA Tournament. Thanks.
Dick Vitale (11:20 AM)
They are playing great right now and I would not want to play them right now. They have beaten the creme de la creme, Kansas and Texas already. I would not want to play them in the tourney.
Of all the Big East teams playing for the championship who do you see being able to win it all for a good seed in the tourney?
Dick Vitale (11:21 AM)
Pittsburgh can win the big dance.
Jeremy (Chicago, IL)
At this point, do you think Illinois deserves an invite to the big dance?
Dick Vitale (11:22 AM)
Yes, based on their schedule strength and some of their wins. If they take the best 37 at-large teams, you cannot tell me they are not one of them.
Will Michigan get in the tournament regardless of tomorrows result? Also do you think they can possibly win the big ten tourney?
Dick Vitale (11:24 AM)
The Wolverines play Illinois in an important game in the Big Ten tournament. This has been an up-and-down season and Michigan can state its case with close games against Kansas and Syracuse to go along with a handful of good Ws.
Buzz Williams seems to rise to the occasion at the Garden of late. What are the Golden Eagles' chances of making an even deeper run than they already have?
Dick Vitale (11:25 AM)
Louisville will be a tough game. Marquette plays with a lot of passion and enthusiasm and reflects on their coach, Buzz Williams. The fact that they beat West Virginia last night tells me they are capable of bigger things.
You saw the Tide in person...does Alabama go dancing, baby?
Dick Vitale (11:27 AM)
When you look at their resume, there are a liot of struggles. I feel the Tide has to make a big run in the SEC tournament to make the big dance. That resume, especially early, makes it tough. They have to win their first game in the SEC tourney for sure.
Joe (Milwaukee, WI)
Any possibility that Wisconsin gets a #2 seed if they win the Big 10 tournament?
Dick Vitale (11:28 AM)
Depends on what happens in other conferences. If Wisconsin runs the table in the Big Ten tourney, yes.
Matthew (Los Angeles,CA)
Do you have any idea why St. Johns can beat a big team like Pittsburgh, yet they can't beat a team like Seton Hall?
Dick Vitale (11:29 AM)
Seton Hall and Rutgers played with emotion and passion. You have to respect that. They have guys like Hazell and Mitchell. St. John's was probably very focused to play Pittsburgh.
Is Colorado dancing this year?
Dick Vitale (11:30 AM)
A win over Kansas State today would help. I think the Buffs are close. They have two over K-State already this season. There are a few tough losses on the resume too. I think it is close.
Hey Dickie V, who you got in the ACC tourney? UNC or Duke?
Dick Vitale (11:32 AM)
That would be a classic if they met. They split in the regular season and they could be on a collision course for round three. It could be for a number one seed too...I don't like to make predictions when I am calling the game.
If Kentucky wins the SEC Tournament do they get a 3 seed?
Dick Vitale (11:34 AM)
It is possible. The tournament selection committee is going to have a hard time between teams seeded 3-6 because there is so much parity in the sport. I am curious to see the bracket on Sunday as there will be a lot of intriguing matchups.
Even without Davies, do you think that Byu could make the final four
Dick Vitale (11:36 AM)
It will be a lot tougher with Davies out since he averaged 11 ppg and around 6 rpg. He was an inside presence to go with Fredette. BYU will probably not make the Final Four without Davies.
Nate (Woburn, MA)
Dick, would the biggest 'little' story be if Harvard beats Princeton on Saturday and returns to the Dance for the first time since '46?
Dick Vitale (11:37 AM)
Tommy Amaker has done a terrific job there and that would be a great story. I will be following the Ivy game, which is like a tournament championship because it is a tiebreaker, played at Yale on Saturday afternoon.
DV - Gottlieb says a Wazzu win over UW today would make them a lock for the NCAA tourney. What's your thoughts?
Dick Vitale (11:39 AM)
I think Washington State is another classic team sweating it out. It is not easy to beat a team three times in one season but the Huskies are a little shorthanded with Overton out and Holiday hurting. Washington State will be watching the results of other games too.
Jordan (Johnston, Iowa)
Who wins the Big 12 Tournament?
Dick Vitale (11:40 AM)
I think Kansas is the choice right now. Bill Self has done a great job when you consider he lost three NBA players in Sherron Collins, Cole Aldrich and Xavier Henry.
Wes (North CA)
I want to talk some Xavier! Extremely underrated pg in Holloway, good size inside and a knack for making runs in the dance. What seed do you see them grabbing and how far do you predict they go?
Dick Vitale (11:41 AM)
That could be an interesting game against Dayton today. Tu Holloway has been super and Xavier has flown under the radar a bit nationally. I like the job being done by Chris Mack. The seed will again depend on the A-10 tourney showing and some results of others.
Todd (Columbia, SC)
What about FSU's resume is any better than BC, Clemson or VT? FSU has 9 wins over teams with a sub-200 RPI, a loss to Auburn and less Top 100 wins than Clemson. What am I missing here?
Dick Vitale (11:43 AM)
Florida State has that big win over Duke on the resume and that helps a lot. The loss to Auburn was pretty bad and there are some lower levels teams in the W column. Those ACC teams are bunched up a bit. That helps make the ACC tournament so interesting.
Dick Vitale (11:47 AM)
I am looking forward to getting down to the ACC tournament as I will be calling the semifinals and finals, and then we have Selection Sunday as we break down the entire bracket. It will be an exciting weekend. I have ready some comments that some experts believe the Big East should not get 11 teams in. Are you serious? Villanova, Georgetown, Marquette, Cincinnati and West Virginia are among the top 37 at-large teams. There is no doubt according to the VBDI (Vitale Bald Dome Index) that we will have 11 from that league and they have earned it. I also want people to go to dickvitaleonline.com and vote for the player of the year. I hope people follow me on twitter as I hope to get to 100,000 followers very soon. Enjoy March Madness baby!