Four selected for USBWA Hall of Fame

INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association's Hall of Fame Class of 2024 has more than 120 years of experience covering college basketball at the highest levels of the game.

Bob Baptist of The Columbus Dispatch, Donna Ditota of The Post-Standard, Chris Dortch of Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook and Terry Hutchens of CNHI Sports Indiana and the Indianapolis Star will be honored on April 8, 2024, in Glendale, Ariz. at the NCAA Men’s Final Four.

The Hall of Fame members named by the Women’s Board, to be honored at the Women’s Final Four in Cleveland, will be named in a separate announcement.

“The year’s Hall of Fame class is a celebration of careers truly dedicated to coverage of college basketball,” said USBWA president Brendan Quinn of The Athletic. “In their own unique ways, Bob, Chris, Donna and Terry have all provided readers and fans with the two things they want most – information and perspective. Congratulations to our inductees and their families.”

Bob Baptist: For 18 of his 39 years at the Columbus Dispatch, Baptist covered Ohio State basketball with a knowledge of the game that combined a beat writer’s news sense and a columnist’s bent. He describes himself as an “occasional writing award winner, more frequent loser.” Baptist covered the Buckeyes without favor and never cared about basketball’s second-class status in Columbus. He became the dean of the Big Ten hoops beat in the latter stage of his career, keeping alive a rogue preseason media poll that continues to this day, long after his retirement in 2015.

Donna Ditota: The 2022 New York Sportswriter of the Year, as named by the National Sports Media Association, Ditota has covered Syracuse basketball and a variety of other sports since joining the Post-Standard staff in 1986. “She entered the business during a period when locker room access for female journalists was a controversial topic,” wrote past USBWA president and Hall of Famer Mike DeCourcy, “and has endured long enough to now be a part of new-media ventures such as internet programs.” A magna cum laude journalism and mass communications graduate of St. Bonaventure, Ditota was a scholarship basketball player and sports editor of The Bona Venture, the university’s student newspaper. She is a member of the Jandoli School of Communication’s advisory board, and in 2017 received the John Domino Award, which goes to a St. Bonaventure graduate who has excelled in a sports communication position.

Chris Dortch: The words “Blue Ribbon” have become a vital part of preparation during the regular season and the NCAA tournament. For the last 26 years, Dortch has been the editor and publisher of an institution that has delivered essential details and guided reporters and editors in their coverage of the game. Before his creation became an industry standard, Dortch was a college basketball beat reporter at four newspapers. His work has appeared in Sports Illustrated, The Sporting News,, The Athletic, Lindy’s, Athlon’s, the Washington Post, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and SEC He has written a book on the history of Southeastern Conference basketball, played a sportswriter in the movie “42,” has taught sports writing at two universities and is a member of the East Tennessee State University Communication Department Alumni Hall of Fame and the Tennessee Sports Writers Hall of Fame.

Terry Hutchens: In 27 years at the Indianapolis News and Indianapolis Star, Hutchens became an authoritative voice on Bob Knight’s Indiana University program, including the coach’s firing in 2000, the complex, controversial aftermath, and the rise of the Hoosiers to the 2002 national championship game under Mike Davis. Hutchens was a five-time recipient of the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Indiana Sports Writer of the Year Award. His 11 books include, “Rising From the Ashes: The Return of Indiana Basketball.” After his sudden passing in 2018 at the age of 60, Hutchens was named the first winner of the Jim O’Connell Award for Excellence in Beat Reporting.