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Vince Vitrano: Not For Broadcast



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We just got dumped for a better looking guy.

I thought we had something special. I thought she loved me. She said she loved me. Then the prom king broke up with his girlfriend, and my girlfriend dumped me for him. Turns out, she secretly pined for him all along... all 9 years we were together. There we were, dancing together... and she was looking over my shoulder at someone else... wishing I were him. 

Marquette's Tom Crean is leaving to coach at Indiana University.  

Worse still, it was too late for me to even get another date. Now I'm standing here in my tuxedo... at the prom... watching my newly declared ex-girlfriend slow dance with the prom king. She keeps looking over here too, as if to say, "it was nice, but this is better."

Crean did an interview with an Indianapolis television station. Asked why he left MU for IU he said, "Because it's Indiana. It's Indiana Basketball." And now we've got to watch a news conference this morning, with him saying a bunch more stuff about how happy he is to be not here.

Now all my friends are like, "Dude... we're going to Taco Bell. Come with us." "No... I think I'll just go home." "Forget her man! C'mon, we're going to have a 6-pack-taco eating contest... c'mon." "You guys don't understand... you just don't understand. I loved her!"

So Tom Crean quit Marquette, and quit on Milwaukee. Look, I'm not blaming a guy for advancing his career. Indiana is a capstone job in the world of coaching. That's the reality.

It's just a slap in the face reminder that there always seems to be something better than we can offer. Better town... better job... better situation... better money... whatever.

I don't think so. I grew up here, and have lived my whole life in Wisconsin. I guess we just see ourselves differently. I wouldn't give up that kind of money, and that kind of exposure in the Big East, to go live in Bloomington. I've been to Bloomington. It's like Madison light, and that's an insult to Madison.

So I'm angry, and tired. Angry that we lose again. Tired of being labeled if not in word, but by reflection of people's actions, a second tier city or state, program or whatever.

I'll miss him, though. Tom Crean is a spiritual leader who embraced the role of the fans: students, alums, and the community. He is a larger than life, energetic figure. He was always good to me personally and professionally.

To date, the most fun I've ever had covering a story, was our road trip to the Final Four, when Marquette went in 2003. I remember my news director at the time, a MU alum, informed us on our way down that Coach Crean had been watching our reports. My heart  sank as I looked back on what we'd done. We put our Tom Crean Bobble Head on the dash board of our car. We got egged by students in Lawrence Kansas as we loudly extolled the virtues of MU.

Well... I got a glimpse of what kind of guy Crean is when my boss said... yes he saw it, and he's loved it. Coach even crashed one of my live reports from the French Quarter, and did an interview with us right there with crazed fans all around him.

So I'll miss him. I wish Tom well, and hope he finishes second in the Big Ten every year.




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