Dick Vitale isn’t quite Jay Bilas when it comes to bashing the NCAA, but he isn’t afraid to speak his mind when he feels the organization is doing something wrong. Vitale was very outspoken about Florida freshman Chris Walker’s wait to find out his eligibility status on a recent conference call, according to OnlyGators.com:
“I have a very, very tough time dealing with the NCAA in the unbelievable procrastination in making decisions that affect so many peoples’ lives – players lives, teammates lives, fans, coaches, everybody involved… And I don’t understand – we’re not looking for a cure for cancer – we’re trying to find out whether a player can be eligible. And I have a real problem over the years with the incredible delay it takes in determining eligibility.”
Vitale’s concerns are shared by many fans of college sports, as numerous teams have had athletes held up in eligibility limbo, and the issue only seems to be getting worse. While it is understandable for the NCAA to want to make sure that all of their players’ transcripts and academic records are legitimate, it is unfortunate that so many players end up missing months of their seasons because the organization does not have a quicker, more efficient way of sorting through eligibility. Walker, who was the fourth ranked power forward recruit in the nation last year according to Scout.com, is just one of the more high profile cases this season.
Vitale went on to talk about Florida’s play so far this year, and he sees them as one of the nation’s best teams:
“I think, number one, you look at the Gators, I think they have so much winning experience. I mean, I think my memory tells me what’s it’s three consecutive Elite Eights? I mean, that’s incredible. And now they have a team that potentially, I mean they definitely could win a national championship they’re right up there with all the clubs. Maybe a step below right now when you look talent-wise, but on a given night they certainly can be absolutely special.”