Dick Vitale, the college-basketball analyst whose frenetic delivery and fundamental knowledge of the game have made him an ESPN staple in an almost 30-year career there, was named to the Basketball Hall of Fame. He will be inducted in ceremonies Sept. 4-6 in Springfield, Mass.
Vitale helped to put the "Madness" in "March Madness," the annual NCAA Division 1 basketball tournament, with his infectious enthusiasm for the sport and its players.
According to Vitale, he called ESPN's first college game Dec. 5, 1979 (DePaul defeated Wisconsin 90-77), and has called almost 1,000 games since then, including some National Basketball Association contests. He also has a segment on SportsCenter and does radio analysis.
Vitale credits Hall of Fame broadcaster Jim Simpson with helping him to develop his on-air style.