Basketball coach Bobby Knight died in his home surrounded by family on Wednesday in Bloomington, Indiana, days after celebrating his 83rd birthday.
Knight’s family released the news of his death but didn’t give a cause. Instead, they requested privacy during this time, and said “in lieu of flowers, please consider honoring Coach with a memorial contribution to the Alzheimer’s Association or Marian University.”
The highly esteemed Indiana University basketball coach served as head coach at the school for 29 seasons, leading the team to three national championships, 11 Big Ten championships and one National Invitation Tournament title, per his university bio.
He was known for his determination and tough attitude, as well as for his infamous temper tantrums.
“My players put up with me,” he told The Washington Post back in 1985, “because they know that when I do things, even when I do things that I consider distasteful, I do it because I’m trying to help them be the best thing they can be, whatever it is. And I have enough of an ego to think I know better than anyone — professors, girlfriends, the guy in the dorm — what’s best for them.”
Knight “ranks sixth on the all-time coaches list for victories and is the 30th winningest coach of all-time,” per Indiana Univeristy.
Knight retired in 2008, right before winning his 900th game, per The Atlantic.
The Athletic reported that Knight spent his final days spending time with friends and family and taking long walks with his wife.
Did Bobby Knight go undefeated?
In the season of 1976, Coach Knight led his team into a 32-0 undefeated season, per The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Is Bob Knight in the Naismith Hall of Fame?
Bob Knight was enshrined into the Naismith Hall of Fame in 1991, per The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
His career highlights included being the youngest varsity coach in college history at the age of 24 and only one of three coaches to ever lead his team to a triple crown with an NCAA title, an NIT title and an Olympic gold medal.
Was Bobby Knight in the military?
Before his large accomplishments as a coach, Knight joined the U.S. Army as a private in order to be an assistant coach at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, per The Washington Post.
“I just love the game of basketball so,” he said in 1981, per the Post. “The game! I don’t need the 18,000 people screaming and all the peripheral things. To me, what’s most enjoyable is the practice and preparation.”