Click here to skip to main content.
THE WEB Search
left edge right edge
bottom bar

Timeline: Bob Knight career controversies

Posted: Tuesday February 3, 2004 5:41PM; Updated: Tuesday February 3, 2004 5:41PM

Sept. 10, 1979: Knight is sentenced in absentia to six months in jail after being convicted of hitting Puerto Rican police officer Juan de Silva before a July practice at the Pan American Games. The U.S. team had won the gold medal five days after the incident. The government of Puerto Rico decides in 1987 to drop efforts to extradite Knight.

1981: On his weekly TV show, Knight brings out a donkey wearing a Purdue cap after showing films of a "sucker punch" involving Isiah Thomas and Purdue's Roosevelt Barnes.


March 28, 1981: After IU defeats LSU 67-49 at the Final Four in Philadelphia, Knight gets into an altercation with an LSU fan, allegedly shoving him into a garbage can. Knight claims that the fan used obscenities to provoke the incident. No charges are filed.

Jan. 16, 1982: Ohio State guard Troy Taylor claims Knight cursed at him, "calling me everything in the book," after he thought Taylor flagrantly fouled Jim Thomas. Knight and four Indiana players deny the charge and sends films to the Big Ten and Ohio State. Ohio State later supports Knight.

Feb. 16, 1983: Critical of Big Ten officiating, Knight stands at midcourt cursing at Big Ten commissioner Wayne Duke, who was sitting in the press box. Three days later, Knight publicly blasts officials for the "worst officiating I have seen in 12 years" and is publicly reprimanded.

Feb. 23, 1985: Knight tosses a chair onto the Assembly Hall floor while Purdue's Steve Reid attempts to shoot technical free throws. Knight is ejected from the game and later suspended for one game by Duke. Knight makes a formal apology.

Jan. 25, 1986: Receives a technical foul for shouting at the officials during a game against Illinois. He then kicks a megaphone and chews out the Indiana cheerleaders for disrupting a free-throw attempt by Steve Alford.

March 22, 1987: After being assessed a technical foul, Knight bangs his fist on the scorer's table during Indiana's NCAA tournament game against LSU. The university was fined $10,000 by the NCAA and Knight received a reprimand. Hoosiers go on to win the game 77-76 en route to their 1987 NCAA title.

Nov. 22, 1987: With 15:05 remaining and Indiana down 66-43, Knight refuses to let his team finish an exhibition game against the Soviet Union after he is ejected for arguing with referee Jim Burr. He apologizes and is later reprimanded by the university.

Feb. 1988: Knight fails to receive enough votes to be elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame, and later terms the snub "a slap in the face."

April 25, 1988: During an NBC interview with Connie Chung on the subject of stress, Knight utters the now-infamous quote: "I think that if rape is inevitable, relax and enjoy it." The remark triggers a protest march of about 300 people on the Indiana campus.

March 10, 1991: In a growing spat, Knight leaves the court without shaking hands with Illinois coach Lou Henson, who calls Knight a "classic bully" who thrives on intimidation.

May 1991: Knight asks not to be re-nominated but is elected to the Hall of Fame, joining Larry O'Brien, Tiny Archibald, Dave Cowens, Harry Gallatin, Larry Fleisher and FIBA's Boris Stankovic.

Dec. 3, 1991: Following a game against Notre Dame, Knight bans female AP sportswriter Beth Harris from the locker room, saying it was inappropriate for her to be there and also against university policy. All reporters were subsequently barred from the locker room.

May 25, 1992: During practice for the NCAA tournament, Knight draws national attention and protest from the local NAACP and other black leaders when he pretends to bullwhip black player Calbert Cheaney. Cheaney later says it was a joke and says the whip was a present from the players.

Dec. 7, 1993: Knight pulls son Pat, a junior guard, from a game and appears to kick him in the leg. Knight later claims to have kicked the chair, and not his son.

March 9, 1994: The coach accidentally head-butts freshman Sherron Wilkerson during a timeout at Michigan State.

March 12, 1994: After the Hoosiers' home finale against Wisconsin, Knight recites the following during Senior Day ceremonies: "When my time on Earth is gone, and my activities here are past, you can bury me upside down, and my critics can kiss my ----!"

March 17, 1995: The NCAA reprimands Knight and fines Indiana $30,000 for his outburst toward an NCAA tournament media liaison at a postgame news conference.

March 24, 1998: Knight receives three technical fouls in a home loss to Illinois on Feb. 24 and is ejected by referee Ted Valentine, whose officiating Knight later calls the "greatest travesty" he has seen in his 33 years as a college coach. The Big Ten gives Knight a choice between accepting a $10,000 fine or a one-game suspension, which would cause him to miss the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Feb. 13, 1999: Knight briefly feuds with Northwestern coach Kevin O'Neill following their game, with Knight later explaining he was upset with a group of Northwestern fans chanting, "Who's your daddy?"

June 7, 1999: Knight is investigated for possible battery after allegedly choking restaurant patron Christopher Foster, who said he overheard Knight making racist remarks. Monroe County prosecutors later announce that no charges will be filed against Knight or Foster.

Oct. 12, 1999: Knight accidentally shoots friend Thomas Mikunda in the back and upper shoulder while hunting, causing wounds that were not life-threatening. Knight is later cited for failing to report an accident and hunting without a license

March 17 - May 14, 2000: The university investigates Knight after former player Neil Reed claims the coach choked him during a 1997 practice. A videotape appearing to support Reed's claim appears in April. Other reports that have followed: Knight attacked a former Indiana sports information director, attacked former assistant coach Ron Felling shortly before his 1999 termination and once threw a threw a vase near an athletic department secretary.

May 15, 2000: Indiana president Myles Brand suspends Knight for the first three games of the 2000-01 season, fines him $30,000 and announces a "zero tolerance" policy regarding any future incident by Knight deemed to be inappropriate.

Sept. 7, 2000: Knight confronts 19-year-old freshman Kent Harvey, allegedly grabbing his arm and lecturing him after the student addresses the coach only as "Knight."

Sept. 9, 2000: Indiana president Myles Brand announces that Knight will no longer serve as the school's basketball coach following a pattern of "unacceptable behavior" since the zero-tolerance decree was issued.

March 23, 2001: Texas Tech hires Knight to a five-year, $250,000 contract. There are no conduct or behavior provisions in the contract.

Dec. 22, 2003: Knight goes on a profanity-filled tirade during an interview with ESPN's Fran Fraschilla about his relationship with Steve Alford, who was also involved in the interview.

Feb. 2, 2004: Knight gets into a verbal confrontation with Texas Tech chancellor David Smith at a Lubbock grocery store.

divider line
SI Media Kits | About Us | Subscribe | Customer Service
Copyright © 2005 CNN/Sports Illustrated.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you. Read our privacy guidelines.
search THE WEB Search