If you've seen "Hoop Dreams," or if you've seen one of his "motivational" speeches, you see a very different Dick Vitale than the one shilling for pizza or Duke. He's impassioned, sure, but he's also optimistic and, occasionally, legitimately uplifting. You get a sense that really does want to make a difference in the life of every person he meets. Aggressively so.
So it didn't surprise us that Vitale reads student newspapers religiously and tries to motivate student journalists too. From the University of Kansas newspaper:
I have no idea how, but it seems that Vitale must have seen my article written last week on referee Steve Welmer. I have been told that Vitale regularly reads Kansan.com as well as the student newspapers for several other colleges, so maybe that is how he saw my story or got the address to The Kansan. Vitale autographed a couple of things including the cover of a recent issue of American Airlines Magazine and included a message that I will never forget:
"BJ, Rock Chalk Jayhawk Baby. You are an excellent writer. Keep chasing your dreams. Best of luck in your career." -Dick Vitale, Hall of Fame 2008"
OK, so two great things here. One: Vitale signs everything now with "Hall of Fame 2008." We know this is common from people who make Halls of Fame ... but still. Also: We bet he has about 500,000 copies of that American Way magazine next to his desk. Surrounding his desk. Spanning the walls.
Vitale Keeps It Classy [Kansan.com]