"I don't really remember, Bobby. I suppose you might have. I don't pay much attention to that sort of thing."
"Well, I do. And I wanted neutral officials." Knight was walking away now.
Sutton dropped the charm school routine. "If you wanted neutral officials, Bob, why didn't you get 'em yourself?"
Knight stopped short. He and Sutton were about 15 feet apart. Knight turned and glared at Sutton. "You were the home team, Eddie. That means you get the officials. And when I ask you to get neutral officials and you agree, I think I have every right to think I'll get neutral officials."
Knight didn't wait for Sutton to respond. He turned and walked into the interview room. Sutton waved his hand in the air as if to say, The hell with you. Fortunately, Knight didn't see the gesture.
It was after midnight when the Indiana bus pulled up 'to Assembly Hall after the flight home. "It bothers me," Knight said, "that Alford's not here to see his teammates. That disappoints me. But you have to understand why you came up short tonight. Alford had not one goddam thing to do with our losing that game. Right here in this room we've got all the talent I need to win. We didn't need Alford to win tonight. Don't feel sorry, don't feel down. We just kicked a golden opportunity away tonight. We'll be in here at 11 o'clock in the morning."
The players went home. The coaches went to their locker room. It was after 4 a.m. when they finally went home. Indiana's record was 2-1. It had already been a long season.
What was most surprising about the two days following the Kentucky game—other than the fact that the sun came out each day—was that Knight never once berated Alford. Knight not carrying a grudge is a little bit like George Burns not carrying a cigar.
Knight knew that Alford had been the subject of nationwide sympathy the last three days. Almost no one agreed with the NCAA's decision to suspend Alford; Knight was glad of that, and he agreed with the sentiment. He was furious with the NCAA. But he was also angry with Alford, and he was afraid Alford might end up feeling like a martyr. That may have been the reason for his tirade the next afternoon. Or maybe he had just been holding back for 72 hours and could do so no longer.