Ben Cohen of the Wall Street Journal listened to a lot of Dickie V:
Asked in an interview if he harbored a pro-Duke bias, the 73-year-old former coach posed a challenge: “Take the video of me doing the Duke game,” he said, “and tell me that I’m biased for Duke.” So that’s what we did.
The sample for this study consisted of five Duke games Vitale has called over the last two seasons. It includes two wins and a loss against North Carolina, a road loss to N.C. State this January and a thrilling home win over Miami on Saturday. We logged 1,157 comments made by Vitale in these games and examined each one for signs of bias.
True to perception, 13% of these comments were positively gushy about Duke’s players, its coach Mike Krzyzewski, its quirky arena (Cameron Indoor Stadium), its rabid fans (the Cameron Crazies) and the SAT scores these fans may have attained.
Let’s be clear: By gushy we’re not talking about straightforward praise doled out for specific plays, like “good job by Kelly to come up with the loose ball.” We’re talking about statements like: “Talk about a P-T-P-er, baby, a prime time performer! Mr. Kelly’s been on fire! Somebody call the fire chief, man, he’s burning up the nets! Here he is, nothing but nylon! NBA time! Ryan Kelly, what a show!”