“College basketball will never be the same. Bobby Knight resigned from Texas Tech on Monday, and it could be the end for the winningest coach in NCAA Divison I basketball history. Knight took his 902 wins and called it a day, but the legacy he left behind will echo through college basketball forever.””
College basketball will never be the same.
Bobby Knight resigned from Texas Tech on Monday, and it could be the end for the winningest coach in NCAA Divison I basketball history.
Knight took his 902 wins and called it a day, but the legacy he left behind will echo through college basketball forever.
Instead of mourning the loss of perhaps the greatest college basketball coach of all time, it’s time to reflect on what Knight did in his 42 years as a head coach.
One perfect season.
Three National Championships.
One NIT Championship.
One Gold Medal.
28 NCAA Tournaments.
Four 30-win seasons.
If those numbers aren’t enough to prove his legacy, they don’t have to. Coaches all around Div. I basketball have done nothing but praise Knight for his contributions to the game.
Duke head coach Mike Kyzewzski, who played for Knight at Army, said no person outside of his immediate family has had a greater impact on his life and that he loves him.
Yet, still, many will remember Knight only for the headlines he made because if his outbursts.
He threw a chair across the floor.
He scolded the media every chance he got.
He took his grandson to a press conference.
He even put his hands on and hit some players.
People accused him of hunting too close to their property and hitting them with birdshot.
But, if those are the only things some people remember Knight for, it’s their own loss.
What often slipped through the cracks about Knight’s career to the common public was his outstanding ability to graduate his players.
In an age where college basketball players jump to the NBA the second they have the chance, Knight was able to guide his athletes to their diploma.
And he still sent 36 players to the NBA.
Not only was he able to graduate his players, he was able to recruit them legally and truthfully under NCAA requirements.
He never had a recruiting violation in his 42 years as a head coach.
Remember Knight for what you want, but his impact on college basketball cannot be debated. Ever.
I always remember thinking, and I still do to this day, that if I ever had the talent to play college basketball, I would have wanted to play for Bob Knight and no one else.
When I realized I would never play college basketball and decided I’d maybe try to become a journalist, I was hoping one day I’d be the reporter he was yelling at.
Not because I like being belittled, but because I understand why Knight acted the way he did and I respect it.
His players and fellow coaches respected him for the passion and innovation he brought to the game of basketball-you should too.