College Basketball's Dick Vitale Visits Oct. 27

TAMPA, Fla. (Oct. 24, 2008) – After a personal invitation from the University of South Florida Athletics Department, College Basketball Hall of Famer Dick Vitale has decided to a make a stop on the Tampa campus on Monday, Oct. 27 to sign copies of his new book. Vitale will be at the campus book store from noon-1:00 p.m.

“Vitale is one of the most popular and beloved figures in college basketball,” said USF Director of Athletics Doug Woolard. “He’s also a resident of this area and an ambassador for our community. We asked him to come to our beautiful campus, and we are honored that he accepted. Basketball fans from all over Tampa Bay will be excited to attend this one-of-a-kind opportunity to meet an ESPN legend.”

In his latest book, Dick Vitale’s Fabulous 50 Players & Moments in College Basketball: From the Best Seat in the House During My 30 Years at ESPN, Vitale, America’s self-confessed number one college basketball junkie, goes on the record ranking his favorite players and moments from 1 to 50.

For 30 years, Vitale has been synonymous with the best in college basketball. His enthusiasm, knowledge, unique turn of a phrase and passion set the bar for the best in hoops coverage. From his wealth of experience sitting courtside at many pivotal moments in college basketball, Vitale gives readers the reasons why he has chosen his top 50 players and moments – out of the many he has witnessed during his years of broadcasting at ESPN.

Vitale has been an integral part of ESPN since the network’s early days in 1979. He has served as head coach on the scholastic, collegiate and professional levels, and was inducted as a member of the Class of 2008 in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame – the highest honor in the sport.

USF is on the verge of the opening tip-off of the 2008-09 basketball season. The men’s basketball team opens play with an exhibition against West Florida on Nov. 4, while the women’s team begins the year against the Miami Sun on Nov. 1.

The University of South Florida is one of the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of 39 community-engaged, four-year public universities as designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. USF was awarded more than $360 million in research contracts and grants in FY 2007/2008. The university offers 219 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The university has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 46,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference.

– USF –