ESPN extends Dick Vitale’s contract through 2018-19

Get ready, baby! One of the most legendary voices in college basketball, Dick Vitale, is set to remain with the WorldWide Leader in Sports for the next few years. On Thursday morning, ESPN announced Vitale’s contract has been extended through 2018-19.

When Vitale’s new deal ends, he will have been with the network for a whopping 40 years.

Vitale first started with ESPN back in 1979-1980, shortly after the network’s launch.

“Dick’s energy and love for basketball and life continue to be at the heart of his incredibly well-earned success,” said John Wildhack, ESPN Executive Vice President, Production and Programming. “Fans truly appreciate Dick’s engaging and entertaining style, and his continued work to fight cancer on behalf of The V Foundation is remarkable.”

“ESPN has been a vital part of my life. Completing the next three years of my contract will mean 40 years of hoops heaven. I have loved every moment, and it has been a thrill to be courtside and call some of the greatest games in the country, sitting next to some of the most outstanding play-by-play announcers you could ever want to work with. I can’t thank them, the producers and all of the people behind the scenes enough for giving me a life that’s exceeded any dream I’ve ever had. My goal is to be the first announcer ever to call a game and say “you’re awesome baby” at 100,” Vitale added.

There is no denying Vitale’s impact on the college sports world.

Throughout his career, the legendary broadcaster has racked up a series of awards including  the National Sports Media Association Hall of Fame; the American Cancer Society’s Man of the Year Award for his dedication to cancer awareness; the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Court of Honor Award; Seton Hall University with the Humanitarian Award; the AutoZone Liberty Bowl with the Distinguished Citizen Award; and the New Jersey Hall of Fame.

Congrats on the new deal, Dickie V.

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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports