Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Vitale adds Hall to varied resume

Dick Vitale will be enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor today joining, among others, his former Pistons boss and former Lightning owner Bill Davidson.

Vitale, 69, a Lakewood Ranch resident and member of numerous Halls, said this is "one of the greatest honors you can ever receive," especially given his story of parlaying his passion and blue-collar work ethic to rise from a sixth-grade teacher to NBA coach to television fixture.

The ceremony will be carried live on ESPN Classic at 7:30 p.m.

Other inductees: Pat Riley, Hakeem Olajuwon, Patrick Ewing, Adrian Dantley and Immaculata University coach Cathy Rush, a pioneer who led her team to three titles.

Riley, who retired from coaching this year, has five rings, four with the "Showtime" Lakers led by Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. His last championship was with the Heat in 2006.

Ewing and Olajuwon's careers have intersected since college, where Ewing's Georgetown Hoyas beat Olajuwon's Houston Cougars in the 1984 NCAA title game. A decade later, Olajuwon's Rockets defeated Ewing's Knicks for the NBA championship.

"We both are warriors. We both want to excel. We both wanted to dominate, and when you play against the best you want to perform at your best," Ewing said in April after the Hall of Fame vote was announced. "So we both definitely looked at each other as the best."

That 1994 Knicks team was coached by Riley, who has said that failing to get an NBA ring for Ewing is among his greatest regrets.

Dantley, a six-time All-Star, played for seven teams during his 15-year NBA career.

In 1979, Vitale accepted an offer from ESPN, then a fledgling cable sports station out of Bristol, Conn. He had been fired by Davidson after a short stint as Pistons coach.

Vitale spent the next 30 years becoming the voice of college basketball.

"I would have been dead by 50 if I had stayed in coaching," Vitale said this week. "I just could not handle losing."

"He's truly an icon who creates excitement by his very presence, a unique broadcasting quality that few share," ESPN spokesman Josh Krulewitz said.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

Vitale adds Hall to varied resume 09/04/08 [Last modified: Saturday, September 6, 2008 2:51pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi admitted he probably should have gone on the DL sooner than late July for the back stiffness that was keeping him from throwing the ball where he wanted to. He has since found an impressive groove, with another strong outing Saturday.

  2. Matt Baker's takeaways from Florida State-N.C. State

    College

    RB Cam Akers still looks like a former high school quarterback at times. His first two touches (30 yards) were special, but the freshman juked instead of powering ahead on his third (an unsuccessful third-and-1 rush). That's why the Seminoles are easing him in, as they did with Dalvin Cook three years ago.

    Running back Cam Akers carries for a first down during the third quarter as FSU eases the freshman into the college game.
  3. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.
  4. Lightning confused by NHL's slashing crackdown

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — D Victor Hedman said the joke in the Lightning locker room before Friday's exhibition game was that the over/under on slashing penalties would be six.

    "It was the over again," Hedman quipped.

    Wing Ryan Callahan, left,  pursues the Predators’ Colton Sissons, being careful how he uses his stick given the crackdown on slashing in the preseason. “It’s hard to defend when you’re so used to doing something for so long and now it’s a penalty,” Callahan says.
  5. Trump fallout: Bucs' DeSean Jackson to make 'statement' Sunday

    Bucs

    Bucs receiver DeSean Jackson said Saturday that he will make a "statement" before today's game against the Vikings in response to President Donald Trump's comment that owners should "fire" players who kneel in protest during the national anthem.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson (11) makes a catch during the first half of an NFL game between the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017.