Dick Vitale Wasn't Dick Vitale 34 Years Ago, Baby

Gabe ZaldivarPop Culture Lead WriterDecember 5, 2013

Why so glum, baby?

Dick Vitale didn't always have the flash and flare of a puppet that would be more at home on Sesame Street. No, before he was shouting at the camera with the enthusiasm of a cheerleader on a caffeine bender he was giving reserved and, dare I say, calm assessments of upcoming games. 

ESPN publicist Mike Humes decided to tweet out a forgotten gem. It's one of the most recognizable voices in college basketball enjoying his first foray into sportscasting. 

It's rather frustrating to listen to Vitale knowing what he is about to become. It's like watching Michael Jordan struggle with curveballs. 

At some point, we were hoping Vitale would punch Joe Boyle in the face and rip off his suit and tie to uncover a swagged out track suit.

That's when he would scream, "Wes Matthews isn't just the Wisconsin wizard, he's the Wisconsin warlock, putting a hex on your program and proving he is the most delightfully diabolical diaper dandy ever, baby!"

Sadly, that moment never came. Instead, this Vitale impostor summed up the clash between the Badgers and DePaul all the way back on Dec. 9, 1979. 

Two important things to note: 

  1. If Vitale ever loses use of both his arms, we now know his torso and head can speak into a microphone, so we are covered. 
  2. Boyle's face makes it look like he is one second from dropping the mic and walking away. 

As Humes states, this is the first game Vitale called, and we can tell from the open that he is really rather good. 

We give him a hard time, which is true for any big personality with a huge shtick, but there is a reason Vitale has been around over three decades. 

He is damn compelling to watch and he knows his stuff. Love him or hate him, it took Vitale a long time to hone his iconic style. 

Here is that first glimpse, and it's an interesting one. 

We are just glad this Vitale guy took a hike and we now get to enjoy Dicky V! Ahem, baby. 


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