Dick Vitale at his 2021 gala. The V Foundation for Cancer Research, a top-rated cancer research charity, and ESPN Hall of Fame Sportscaster Dick Vitale were pleased to announce that the 16th Annual Dick Vitale Gala has raised over $5 million for pediatric cancer research. Held on May 7 at the Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota, the Gala hosted supporters and celebrities to further groundbreaking advancements in childhood cancer research. Flsar 050921 Sp Gala 13

In some (lately too rare) good news: Dick Vitale received medical clearance today to be courtside this weekend for one of the top men’s college games of the season.

Sunday afternoon’s ABC broadcast of #2 Baylor hosting #6 Villanova will feature Dickie V alongside Boog Sciambi, a welcome return to up close action for Vitale that comes after even better news: good results on a medical test.

Vitale tweeted about that test Friday morning, in fact:

Vitale, 82, then got word that he was in fact cleared:

Vitale, obviously, was thrilled:

This is such good news on a variety of obvious levels, many more important than the game itself. Even just from a viewing perspective, Vitale is one of the last true legends of his generation still working in broadcasting. He might not be in the prime of his analyst career, and yes, he’ll bring out the variety of well-worn catchphrases. But Vitale does something for a game like this that few others can do, simply by being on the call: he makes it feel like a big event. That’s an innate quality, hard-earned by being the face of the sport (and of ESPN’s coverage of the sport) for decade after decade.

Plus, for god’s sake, the man just freaking loves college basketball. Vitale’s enthusiasm and excitement are palpable, and for neutral fans tuning in for a few hours of heavyweight non-conference action in December, it’s hard to ask for more.

Put another way:

Exactly right.

About Jay Rigdon

Jay is a columnist at Awful Announcing. He is not a strong swimmer. He is probably talking to a dog in a silly voice at this very moment.