February 27, 2012

'These Kids Are Stealing Money by Being on Scholarship': In a post-game press conference after a Lamar University loss Wednesday, head coach Pat Knight went on an eight-minute rant about seniors who've been problems on- and off-the-court. "We have an infestation of guys that are hard to coach," said Knight, the son of Bobby Knight. "I've never been around a group as a whole like that. ... When I played, if you acted like the way some of these guys did ... you got shoved in a locker with a forearm up against your neck. And told that's not how we do things here at Indiana. And that's what we need." Lamar won its next game 72-49. "I'm so proud of these seniors," Pat Knight said.

posted by rcade to basketball at 11:56 AM - 12 comments

In his first year there, Knight can blame his problems on someone else's players if he wants. But it doesn't look good. A lot of guys that could have played that card haven't done so.

It's unfortunate to have the Knight family Indiana saga dredged up and brought into this by Pat Knight's reference to the forearm against the neck. A lot of polarizing moments and unpleasant memories reside in that tale.

As brainwashed and manipulated as Pat Knight appeared to be in his role as apologist for the deeds and methodology of his father's regime during their days at IU, he would be better off leaving all that business in the unspoken past rather than reviving it.

posted by beaverboard at 12:33 PM on February 27, 2012

Don't give all the family secrets away for abusing ... errrr.... motivating the players, Pat.

posted by scully at 12:40 PM on February 27, 2012

"These kids are stealing money by being on scholarship" is as succint a summation of the corruption in college athletics as any I've read in some time.

posted by hincandenza at 01:32 PM on February 27, 2012

"my dad tells me I need to go to 'Shut-Up School' sometimes."

Love that line.

Especially given who it came from. If anybody needed to go to "Shut Up School" it was dad.

posted by dviking at 02:25 PM on February 27, 2012

Why Lamar is still paying Knight is questionable. The guy is a coach at a university. His players are kids learning about life, sometimes making mistakes or choosing the hard way.

Knight has the privledge of getting paid to lead and show them the correct way ... broadcasting his opinions through the media that his seniors are druggies and stealing from the university via their scholarships shows no leadership and is a bigger problem than whatever situation exists with said seniors.

posted by cixelsyd at 03:27 PM on February 27, 2012

Knight shouldn't talk wistfully about the days when a coach could assault his players. Otherwise, I don't fault him for the rant.

posted by rcade at 07:09 PM on February 27, 2012

Here in Beaumont, you might imagine this is being received a bit differently. Coach Knight was elevated to near-hero status for taking a stand. And no one from Lamar has stepped-in to "clarify" his remarks. Reliable word on the street has it that Coach Knight tried to handle the growing number of issues internally with game suspensions and decreased playing time, but to no effect. Lamar is within reach of it's first 20-win season since 1988. Rather than wait until after the end of the season and blame their collapse on a group of uncoachable seniors, he took the drastic step of calling them out publically while they still had a chance to save their season, it hopes that their pride would not allow them to go down without a fight. He probably could have and should have tempered his comments. But, most here feel they were well-timed and straight to the point. Considering the recent late-season collapses by THIS team, it was probably the right thing to do.

posted by tasenters at 08:23 AM on February 28, 2012

Coach Knight was elevated to near-hero status for taking a stand.

Oh good, I was worried we wouldn't have another mean-dog member of the Knight family inexplicably glorified for being a sociopath to young people.

posted by yerfatma at 11:52 AM on February 28, 2012

The thing that worries me is the man in Beaumont making reference directly back to Bloomington.

When it comes to tracing the Knight family's motivational comet across the American landscape, folks in Lubbock, where they put sons of famous football players in the woodshed for reorientation, are darn well likely to feel left out.

posted by beaverboard at 12:34 PM on February 28, 2012

Damn, we've gotten to the point that we love to demonize people, haven't we? Talkin' about Bobby, not Pat. I dunno if this is a consequence or a symptom of our political landscape over the past X years, but it seems to have gotten to the point that everybody's walkin' around with their pockets full of stones, lookin' for targets. Bobby was an arrogant s.o.b. with an oft out-of-control temper, but if you polled the players who actually played for him, I'd be willing to bet that better than 75% of them would say they'd do it over again - he was also a helluva coach. And a truth-teller. Seems Pat inherited that, for better or worse.

posted by outonleave at 06:46 PM on February 28, 2012

I'd be willing to bet that better than 75% of them would say they'd do it over again - he was also a helluva coach. And a truth-teller.

"If you polled abused wives in this household, I'd bet 100% of them would say they'd stay with the bastard."

posted by yerfatma at 07:25 PM on February 28, 2012

I'd like to ask Isaiah if he'd rather play for Knight the chair thrower or the master motivator Chuck Daly who didn't need to foist a continual stream of ballistic moments on the nation in order to win championships.

I will also say that there have been times when I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to commentator Bob Knight call college basketball games. I couldn't believe it was him at first. Measured, reasonable, thoughtful...without abandoning any of his strongly held principles and feelings about the game.

He was a great coach, but coaching brought out a side of him that I'm glad is no longer at the forefront.

posted by beaverboard at 08:22 PM on February 28, 2012

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