IU Alumni Association, Administration, and President-Rename Assembly Hall for Coach Knight
It's important to the school and Alumni Association
- IU Alumni Association, Administration, Marketing Dept.
- President of Indiana University
I am an IU alumni 1996 and 2002 and grew up watching Indiana Basketball. Essentially, I lived, ate, and breathed it until September of 2000 when Coach Knight was terminated by the then President of Indiana. Since that day, I and other Knight fans, have boycotted anything IU. I have not watched a game since and have turned down tickets to games as well. Whatever the controversies over the years, the fact remains that Coach Knight built a legacy for IU basketball beyond compare. Coach Knight had a 98% graduation rate among his teams and never violated an NCAA rule during his career. He won 3 NCAA championships, 1 NIT Championships, and 11 Big 10 Conference championships. He coached a team to a Pan Am Games Gold Medal and a team to an Olympic Gold Medal making him one of only 3 coaches in history who won an NCAA title, NIT title, and Olympic Gold Medal. He was honored as being #3 on the list of all time greatest college basketball coaches, National coach of the year 4 times, and Big 10 Conference Coach of the year 8 times. His teams appeared in the tournament 24 of 29 seasons, got to the sweet sixteen 14 times, and never lost a title game in which Knight coached and Indiana appeared. Coach Knight was the last coach to have an undefeated season. Coach Knight was honest, had a wicked sense of humor, and had integrity and passion for IU basketball. He had an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the games, stats, strategies, tactics, and teams he had coached and could compare year to year, team to team, and player to player. He knew basketball better than the creator of the game himself. He also so loved IU that he took salary less than many coaches who accomplished much less, made money for the University, and built libraries. Coach Knight never got the thanks he should have been afforded at a Big Ten retirement celebration and he just recently was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Sadly, after September 2000 it was as though IU tried to erase the whole era. That was an insult to those of us who grew up on IU Basketball, Knight's accomplishments and contributions, and the fans and alumni who loved and respected Coach Knight. In Tom Crean there is a familiar feeling of passion, academics, integrity, and zeal for IU basketball. I had heard Dick Vitale commenting on how Assembly Hall should be renamed for Coach Knight. I turned the channel but as I have thought about it, I thought this was a fitting way to heal the rift there is between those fans and alumni who were devoted Knight and IU basketball fans then and those who are now. It brings that era back into the history of IU Basketball for all to see, experience, and celebrate. More importantly, it ushers those of us who left, a way to come back, buy, wear, be excited, and watch IU Basketball again. So, I ask you to consider renaming Assembly Hall in whole or part for Robert M. Knight. Heal Hoosier nation. Thank you,
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