Dick Vitale Gives Inspirational Speech After Receiving Jimmy V Award

Doric SamJuly 21, 2022

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: Dick Vitale attends the 2022 ESPYs at Dolby Theatre on July 20, 2022 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Momodu Mansaray/WireImage)
Momodu Mansaray/WireImage

Legendary broadcaster Dick Vitale received the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the 2022 ESPYs on Wednesday night.

Like only Dickie V. can, he gave an inspiring speech after he accepted the award. The entire 20-minute speech can be viewed on ESPN.com.

ESPN @espn

"Jimmy's dream was to beat cancer. And we must do it." <br><br>Join <a href="https://twitter.com/DickieV?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DickieV</a> in continuing Jim Valvano's fight with a gift to <a href="https://twitter.com/TheVFoundation?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheVFoundation</a>: <a href="https://t.co/6NwFh2XdEK">https://t.co/6NwFh2XdEK</a> <a href="https://t.co/ECxswbChXi">pic.twitter.com/ECxswbChXi</a>

The 83-year-old talked about having had cancer and spent a large amount of his speech praising the Jimmy V Foundation for raising funds to research a cure for cancer. Vitale also took some time to pay homage to the memory of his late friend, Jim Valvano.

ESPN @espn

“Don’t bet against me.”<br><br>Dick Vitale is the recipient of the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at this year’s <a href="https://twitter.com/ESPYS?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ESPYS</a> ❤️ <a href="https://t.co/GOCiKRoycO">pic.twitter.com/GOCiKRoycO</a>

A college basketball announcer for over 40 years, Vitale announced last October that he was diagnosed with lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system. Despite the diagnosis, Vitale was able to be a part of ESPN's broadcast for the opening night of the 2021 college basketball season.

Vitale had to step away after broadcasting four games to focus on his health. In addition to chemotherapy, he was instructed not to talk for three months to save his vocal cords and prevent growths from getting larger. On April 14, Vitale announced on Twitter that he was cancer-free.

Wednesday night was a proper celebration of Vitale. As is his nature, he closed his speech with a poignant message, saying, "Keep chasing your dreams, keep chasing your goals. Just remember: perseverance, plus passion, plus pride, equals 'win' in the game of life."