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Dick Vitale Cites 'Big-Time' Coach Chris Beard, Gives Shout-Out to

"Yes,'' Vitale writes back to, "Texas has put together multiple ... skilled talents and will have a big-time year under new leader Chris Beard.''

AUSTIN - Dick Vitale has taken notice of the University of Texas basketball program.

And he's taken notice of LonghornsCountry's coverage of the team as well.

The legendary "Dickie V'' engaged in a brief and pleasant exchange with us on Twitter this weekend as we reviewed the Texas Longhorns men’s team as it enters the 2021 season with several new players. ... and of course, a new and high-profile coach.

Expectations are heightened, largely due to new head coach Chris Beard who has been working hard to transform the program. And Vitale, ESPN’s famed personality, is a believer, recently ranked the Longhorns No. 3 in his college preseason Top 40 rankings.

And when we cited on social media what Vitale had to say about Texas ... Vitale responded.

"Yes,'' Vitale wrote, "Texas has put together multiple ... skilled talents and will have a big-time year under new leader Chris Beard.''

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Vitale's original UT review:

“Chris Beard should enjoy his first season with the Longhorns. He landed the best group of transfers, led by Marcus Carr from Minnesota. This Texas squad is one of the deepest in America; the second team could be ranked as its own unit. Andrew Jones is the top returning starter and he may be coming off the bench. Dylan Disu is coming off a knee injury; if he is healthy, he has double-double potential. Tre Mitchell can flat-out play. There is excitement galore for Texas, which will battle with Kansas for the Big 12 title.”

Beard, the former Texas Tech head coach, picked up seven players in the transfer portal, elevating the Longhorns' preseason ranking. He's accustomed to getting noticed for his work. Vitale? Few college basketball people get more attention, and well-deserved, than "Dickie V.''

And at SI? We're happy to ride their attention-getting coattails.

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