Tuesday, January 02, 2007

A New Year and a Good Knight

It took a little longer than Bobby Knight might have liked, but Monday afternoon the Texas Tech - and formerly Indiana and Army - coach finally got the win that pushed his career total past North Carolina's legendary Dean Smith.

The Red Raiders beat New Mexico 70-68, for Knight's 880th college basketball Division 1 win against 354 losses, a winning percentage of 71%. Knight, who is 65, is not even considering retirement, so a run at 1000 wins is possible. At 20 wins per season (below his average), it would take Knight just six years to surpass that milestone.

The next marks for Knight, besides getting his Texas Tech team through the grueling Big 12 conference schedule and into the NCAA tournament in March, are the 925 wins recorded both by Tennessee Volunteers women's coach Pat Summitt and by Harry Statham of NAIA McKendree College, who holds the record for the most men's wins at a 4-year college.

Knight won the NCAA national championship three times as coach of the Indiana Hoosiers, in 1976, 1981 and 1987, and coached the 1984 Olympic team to the Gold Medal.

While some may decry Knight's methods as too harsh or too demanding, nobody can deny the results.

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