The brawl at the end of the Kansas-Kansas State game Tuesday night drew a lot of immediate discussion, including from ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale. Vitale was calling another game entirely (Miami-Duke, with Rece Davis and Brooke Weisbrod), but at halftime of that game, the ESPN studio cast brought him into their discussion of the Jayhawks-Wildcats brawl. And Vitale was fired up:
“Well, just absolutely sickening, unbelievable. The 40 years I’m on TV, I haven’t seen anything like that, unless you go to the NBA and the Pistons’ brawl that took place at the Palace. I think there’s no doubt in my mind that [Kansas forward Silvio] De Sousa [who picked up a chair during the fight, but then set it down before hitting anyone] never, ever should put a uniform on in college basketball again. None! As Seth [Greenberg] said, and I couldn’t agree more, ‘He’s holding a chair!’ I mean, that’s criminal! He’s going to hurt somebody! I mean, I don’t want to hear any excuse that ‘They stole the ball with time running out, they should never have done such a thing.’ Give me a break! That was ugly!”
Vitale then went on from there:
“Where were the coaches, the assistants, keeping their teams on the bench? That’s the first rule! One assistant should take charge and make sure that no one gets there. It is sickening. There’s no place in the game. That was almost criminal, what De Sousa has done. I will be shocked if he ever wears a uniform again, a Kansas uniform.”
Those are certainly strong opinions from Vitale. We’ll see if the NCAA comes down with the kind of discipline he’s predicting here.