I found this mildly entertaining
LOWDOWN ON DICKIE DUNCE: AWFUL, BABY!
Dick Vitale took his act to the NBA Draft on ESPN last week — and proved he's as much an airhead talking about the pros as he is on the college beat.
June 29, 2004 --
FAR be it from me to segue into summer without summarily slapping someone. Today's vacuous victim is none other than Dick Vitale, whose credibility lies somewhere between Bill Clinton and Baghdad Bob.
For reasons known only to ESPN, the cable claptrap decided Vitale's putrid presence was necessary during the NBA Draft. Evidently the network felt obliged to offer up someone with the same odious opinions (minus subtitles) as Stephen A. Smith, "Fraudulent" Fran Fraschilla and Jay Bilas, whose impropriety regarding Josh Smith (No. 17, Hawks) already was noted in this space, and whose impartiality re Kris Humphries warrants serious questioning.
When the Jazz selected the Minnesota frosh at No. 14, Bilas savaged him and his father on what is supposed to be a joyous celebration for the draftees, their kids and their parents. What ever happened to full disclosure? Why didn't Bilas, a former Dukie, inform ESPN's audience the 6-foot-9 forward had bailed on his original commitment to play for Blue Devils? Think Bilas might have an ax to grind?
Vitale, meanwhile, college basketball's all-time shill/sellout (Billy Packer and Digger Phelps are demanding a recount), recited from his same tired tome. It's the play-for-pay guys' fault ... from the early entrants to the lack of fundamentals to the poor quality of panty raids.
Not to suggest Vitale isn't well-versed to warble on the pros. After impressing only himself (and fooling only Bill Davidson) at the U. of Detroit —where Terry Tyler and John Long carried him like overburdened burros — he coached (for want of a more truthful word) the Pistons when they really were the Bad Boys.
Try Vitale's forgettable foray (34-60) in one-plus seasons. How overmatched was Dickie Dunce? The '79-'80 Pistons, an outfit he personally assembled from which he was dutifully dismissed after a dozen games (4-8), wound up 16-66, the toilet paper standard for that franchise's futility.
The only banner that spittoon ever lifted was a white flag.
Thus, after failing miserably on the sport's toughest terrain, Dickie Dunce was more than qualified for his next gig ... airhead of the airwaves. You know what they say: Those who can, do; those who can't, dolt.
Upon further review, Vitale is correct.
The NBA is the reason a guy like Bob Huggins (this generation's Bob Boozer) is allowed to run roughshod over the once-proud U. of Cincinnati program. Though give Huggins credit for one thing — he has managed not to get fired, even though his players' GPA and his own blood-alcohol level are apparently at about the same number.
The NBA is the reason Ohio State felt compelled to expel revered Jim O'Brien. Illegal payments to student/athletes? Details, details.
The NBA is the reason the U. of Georgia had no choice but to turn itself in. That is, after the High Holy Harricks — the father, a long-time Vitale friend, and son — turned the Bulldogs into bullspit with money transfers and "tests" that one could pass while in the womb.
The NBA is the reason St. Bonaventure's reputation became so tainted with phony college credits from phony colleges even priests are howling.
And on (Baylor's Dave "Ignorance Is" Bliss), and on (St. John's), and on (Missouri). I don't know how David Stern sleeps at night.
Having Vitale expectorate about the NBA Draft is like getting Michael Moore as keynote speaker at the Republican National Convention ... 'cept Moore may actually present a substantiated fact or a valid argument or two.
For example, Dickie V's criticism of the 76ers' choice (No. 9) of Andre Iguodala was hopelessly nearsighted and simple-minded. ("How can you pick a kid who only averaged 11 points over Luke Jackson [No. 10, Cavaliers], who's a great perimeter shooter, blah, blah, blah..." he bellowed.)
Well, for one thing, the 76ers already flaunt a great, young 3-point shooter named Kyle Korver.
No doubt this is news to Vitale.
More important, Iguodala averaged 12.9 points, 8.5 rebounds and five assists for the self-sacrificing, well-balanced Arizona Wildcats, a recurrent characteristic of a Lute Olson-coached team. The 6-6 aerodynamically sophisticated soph was the first player in the school's storied history to lead the team in rebounding, assists and steals in the same season. He was also the only Pac Ten player to lead his team in scoring, rebounding, assists and assists-to-turnover ratio.
Surely this is Vitale's introduction to these stats.
More perceptively, when junior Richard Jefferson declared himself eligible for the 2000 draft (No. 13, Rockets) he'd averaged 11.3 that season (one-tenth of a point higher than his average over three years), 5.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists for the self-sacrificing, well-balanced (Gilbert Arenas, Luke Walton) Arizona Wildcats.
Does Vitale sense something along the lines of a trend?
Jefferson turned out to be a pretty good pro/Olympian/rising All-Star without padding his personals in college. Iguodala is expected to enjoy a similar NBA career by everyone except Dickie Dunce, who doesn't seem to grasp the draft concept of picking the best pro prospect, not the guy with the most seductive numbers.
Then again, Vitale is correct in one regard: The sanctity of college basketball. Over the past 25 years, not one institution has sunk to hiring him.