Dick Vitale looks on while wearing a headset at a college basketball game.
Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Dick Vitale Announces Third Cancer Diagnosis: 'I Plan to Fight Like Hell'

Dick Vitale vows to keep calling college basketball games despite a third cancer battle in two years, this time affecting his vocal cords.

Super, scintillating, sensational! Diaper Dandy! P-T-Per! That was awesome, baby!

You can't read those phrases without hearing Dick Vitale's voice. Dickie V has been a college basketball staple for as long as I can remember. If you want to get specific, he's been in the ESPN broadcast booth since the company got off the ground in 1979.

Vitale brings joy and personality to the call that no sports broadcaster can match. He loves college hoops with all his heart, and he's not afraid to show it.

The longtime ESPN announcer was gearing up for his 43rd year on the job until he received his second cancer diagnosis of 2021. Then, in July 2023, the 84-year-old Vitale announced he had a different type of cancer: vocal cord cancer. One of the iconic voices in sports plans to "fight like hell" to be back broadcasting in the Fall, though.

His fights with different types of cancers are downright inspiring.

Vitale Announces Vocal Cord Cancer, Vows to Call Games in Fall 2023

Vitale announced on Wednesday he will require six weeks of radiation for vocal cord cancer. His doctor, Dr. Zeitels, told him it has an "extremely high cure rate."

"I plan to fight like hell to be ready to call games when the college hoops season tips off in the Fall. Dr. Z feels that scenario is entirely possible. I want to say that I have been so touched by the tweets, texts, notes, and prayers, and will ask all of you to continue to send positive vibes," he wrote in a statement on Twitter.

It marks the third cancer diagnosis for him in the last two years.

"This terrible disease strikes so many of our loved ones, and it's now knocked on my door three different times," he wrote.

According to John Hopkins Medicine, nearly 10,000 cases of vocal cord cancer are diagnosed nationally each year. The disease is very "closely linked with a history of smoking, though nonsmokers may get vocal cord cancer as well."

For Dickie V, this will mark his third and hopefully last battle with cancer.

Vitale Beat Melanoma and Lymphoma

RELATED: Jim Kelly Beat Cancer Multiple Times, And Keeps On Fighting

In October 2021, ESPN's Dick Vitale went to the Internet to make an announcement. The then-82-year-old college basketball analyst wrote a press release on ESPN Front Row to reveal he had lymphoma. The lymphoma diagnosis came two months after he underwent surgery to be cleared of melanoma. He cited early detection as a factor in helping him manage both cancers.

Vitale went on to explain his treatment and how it affected his work schedule:

"The plan is to treat my lymphoma with steroids and six months of chemotherapy. The medical experts tell me it has a 90-percent cure rate. They say I can continue to work so I will have to manage my work schedule around my chemo schedule as they will monitor my test results along the way."

Vitale, who was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame and College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2008, started his chemotherapy as the college basketball season got into the swing of things.

Vitale kept a positive attitude as he started his treatment at Sarasota Memorial Hospital in Sarasota, Florida.

In a Twitter video, he attributed his spirits to the loving support he's received. The Hall of Famer then went on to say he has a deep understanding of those who have had or have family members who have been diagnosed with cancer.

The former coach of the NBA's Detroit Pistons was involved with cancer research long before he himself dealt with the disease. He's been a longtime supporter of The V Foundation for Cancer Research in addition to hosting the Dick Vitale Gala to raise money for pediatric cancer research every year.

Even though this was the second time Vitale was diagnosed with a form of cancer in 2021, there's nothing that can hold him back from calling basketball games. He had the entire college hoops world behind him, from Duke to Gonzaga to Kentucky to Michigan to UCLA to Loyola-Chicago.

Dickie V's sport won't be the only one backing him, either. He also his family, including wife Lorraine Vitale, their two daughters, Terri and Sherri, and five grandchildren.

It's the least everyone could do for the guy who makes watching college basketball so awesome, baby.

MORE: Dick Vitale Dumps Liquid on Himself in Hilarious New Commercial