March 4th 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, March 2016

I love this time of year. March Madness is under way. So is Spring Training.

I am lucky to live in Florida. The Orioles are down the road, as are the Pirates. The Rays are in Port Charlotte. It is great to see young players battling for playing time, future stars getting their first taste of the majors.

I am a huge baseball fan. I have season tickets to the Rays. Soon they will be saying Play Ball for real, baby!

February 29th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

We are only a few weeks away from Selection Sunday. It has been a wild college hoop season, and there are plenty of bubble teams and others battling for seeding in Championship Week.

The ACC and SEC are two conferences still very much up for grabs. Kentucky has not even locked up the double-bye in the SEC tournament.

This week we will see a number of teams secure bids into the big dance. You will see lots of celebration for the little guys. Enjoy it!

February 22nd, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

I had a great time with the American Frozen Food Institute. I was the keynote speaker at the beautiful Manchester Grand Hyatt hotel in San Diego. I enjoyed going to Dinner with President, Joe clayton, and several board members. It is a tremendous organization and they are so well organzied. I was honored to be their speaker this weekend.

February 21st, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

It was another wacky weekend of college basketball.

Eight of the top 25 teams in the AP poll lost. It just shows how much parity exists in college hoops, baby!

You can expect great races in several conferences over the next few weeks, leading up to Championship Week. Selection Sunday will be special, and the big dance will be wild.

February 15th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

Saturday was a great example of why this has been a special college basketball season.

Duke edged Virginia at the buzzer on Grayson Allen’s driving shot. Kansas showed why the Big 12 race goes through Lawrence, beating Oklahoma. Wisconsin scored a stunning upset at Maryland. Notre Dame got past Louisville in another thriller. Kentucky showed that it is peaking at a good time, blowing out South Carolina.

It has been a season of unpredictability, so why not see Alabama win at Florida and Texas Tech win at Baylor.

There have been so many great moments and the best is still ahead with Selection Sunday less than a month away.

February 9th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

We had our annual Stars & Cars event to raise money for the V Foundation and pediatric cancer research at Mercedes Benz of Sarasota on Clark Road. The General Manger, Ernie Withers, was so kind and generous and helped us raise dollars.

The event was outstanding as Mary Kenealy and her team did a fantastic job of putting on the show. It was terrific!

We had with us Ryan Hunter-Reay and the car he used to win the Indy 500 in 2014. Also joined with us were celebrities Nic Wallenda, Marcus Liberty ex NBA Player, Jared Ward former Michigan star and NBA player, Tom Niedenfuer who pitched for the Dodgers in the mid 80s and his wife Judy Landers a tv star, Former Boston Redsox star Rico Petrocelli, and Willy Clark who played football at Notre Dame and also 7 years in the NFL.

The night had many local business people join us. It was a great night of networking and sharing insights about helping kids battling cancer.

We were happy to have cancer survivors Erin Kisielewski, Jake Taraska, Kyle Peters, and Cole Eicher join us for this event.

February 8th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

The Denver Broncos are the NFL champions and Peyton Manning was able to celebrate.

My friends, it was the defense that put on a show. Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware were outstanding as the pass rush applied a lot of pressure to Cam Newton.

Carolina made too any mistakes in defeat. Newton still was league MVP and had a great season, but Denver got to hold up the trophy as champions.

February 2nd, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, February 2016

It was fun to watch two of the top PTP’ers in America, Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield and LSU’s Ben Simmons.These two young men are outstanding athletes and quality kids off the court. They are special to their teammates, and they were part of a great game last weekend. Oklahoma found a way to get to the winner’s circle, never losing their poise despite trailing by 14 points.

I love the way Hield has elevated his game. Last year, he was told he would be a second round draft pick, and he decided to return to school. He has worked hard on his game and his stock has climbed dramatically.Hield has improved so much, becoming one of the best three-point shooters in America, He is so versatile, capable of scoring in so many ways. Besides being great at shooting the trifecta, he can explode to the basket. Hield is now ready for the next level. I also love his desire to win. His passion rubs off on his teammates.

Simmons is also well-liked by his teammates. Part of that is due to his tremendous passing skills. Some people have compared his handling of the basketball to the Magic Man, Ervin “Magic” Johnson. The LSU standout has great vision, but he is so unselfish, it is almost to a fault. His presence draws so much attention, so he often finds the open teammate for jump shots. It allows others to score.

I feel he is too passive looking for his own shot at times. He has to be even more aggressive. Simmons has the skills to go to the basket but he has to make moves and look to score. There is some pressure for Simmons to put the team on his back in big games. He did not look for his opportunities to score against Oklahoma. He has to want the basketball on the big stage. He is a rebounding machine, among the nation’s leaders on the boards. He has adjusted nicely from high school to the rigors of college life in the spotlight.

January 25th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, January 2016

The Super Bowl 50 match-up is set. The Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers will square off for the championship.

There will be a lot of attention paid to the quarterbacks, Peyton Manning and Cam Newton. My friends, these two teams go after it on defense too. Denver has a great pass rush with DeMarcus Ware and company. Von Miller is an outstanding linebacker.

Carolina linebacker Luke Kuechly is one of the best in the game.

Both teams have outstanding members of the secondary. Then there is Ron Rivera and Gary Kubiak on the sidelines. It should be a great showdown. Let the hype begin.

January 18th, 2016

Written by Dick Vitale. Posted in Blog, January 2016

The NFL’s version of the Final Four is set. Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady as the Patriots visit Denver. Carolina and Arizona had super seasons and now meet in the NFC title game. Each is one game away from getting to the Super Bowl.

Last week, all four road teams won playoff games. This week, all four home teams won. What will happen in the two games ahead? It should provide excitement galore.