ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale made a strong claim for former Louisville head coach Rick Pitino during Saturday’s Louisville-Florida State game.
The ESPN analyst believes a college basketball program should hire Pitino, giving him a second chance.
Pitino was fired by Louisville following the Cardinals’ Adidas/recruiting scandal in which a five-star prospect was alleged to have received payment for his commitment.
Vitale believes the former Cardinals’ head coach should get another opportunity.
“I hope he gets another opportunity,” Vitale said on ESPN. “We live in a country of second chances.”
Pitino, 66, is currently coaching overseas. He was hired by a Greek team, but will likely only be there for a season.
The former Cardinals’ head coach was at Louisville from 2011-17.
“If he gets that second opportunity, it’ll be win, win and win,” Vitale said.
The ESPN analyst is facing some criticism for his comments:
Dick Vitale defending Rick Pitino: pic.twitter.com/m4ftw8PqaN
— Matthew Wells (@heyitsrealdeal) February 9, 2019
Shut up Dick Vitale. Pitino was a dirtbag and everyone knows it.
— Leland J McElveen Jr (@LelandJMcElveen) February 9, 2019
Vitale says that he understands Pitino made mistakes, but he chalked up those mistakes to the “hiring of two assistant coaches.”
It’ll be surprising at this point if Pitino ends up getting another major college basketball gig.