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Dick Vitale

Category: Broadcasters, NBA
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Biography:

Dick Vitale is a famous college basketball color commentator and analyst. Over the span of his career, he has commentated on approximately one thousand games. He is known for his enthusiastic personality and catchphrases such as “slamburger baby” and “diaper dandy.” In 2008, Vitale was selected as an inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame for his contribution to the sport of basketball.

Before beginning his broadcasting career, Vitale served as a high school, college, and NBA coach. Vitale was a remarkable college coach, compiling a 78-30 record with the University of Detroit; he also led his team to a 21-game winning streak during the 1977 season. Vitale joined ESPN as a broadcaster just after the network’s 1979 launch, and he called ESPN’s first NCAA basketball game. In addition to appearing as a commentator on a large number of games, Vitale also serves as a college basketball analyst for ESPN Radio, which includes regular appearances on the Mike & Mike in the Morning show. He can also be seen on his own “Dick Vitale’s Fast Break” segment on Wednesday evenings during the college basketball season on SportsCenter.

Sports Speaker Vitale has starred in commercials for DiGiorno pizza and Hooters restaurants, and he is also a spokesperson for Airborne Athletics’ Dr. Dish basketball training machine. A number of prominent magazines have featured Vitale, including Sports Illustrated, The Sporting News, People, and Playboy. He is on the Board of Directors for the V Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for cancer. He also co-chairs the annual V Foundation Golf Classic and hosts an annual V Foundation Gala. Vitale regularly awards five annual scholarships to the Boys & Girls Club of Sarasota. In recognition of his generous donations, a Boys & Girls club building was named the Dick Vitale Physical Education and Health Training Center. Vitale has authored nine books and has given famous motivational speeches to high school players at basketball camps; two of these speeches were televised as specials on ESPN. Because of his many accomplishments, Vitale has received a number of awards during his career, including an honorary degree from the University of Notre Dame, the Ronald Reagan Media Award, and the Curt Gowdy Media Award. In addition to these honors, he has also been selected to seven halls of fame; in 2008, Vitale was selected to the renowned Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame for his remarkable contributions to the game of basketball.