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Archive for Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Transition to Pat Knight will be easy, Raiders say

February 6, 2008

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Knight retires; Self saddened

Shocking news from Lubbock, Texas last night: Red Raiders head coach Bob Knight retired, effective immediately. His son, Pat, will take over. Enlarge video

— Pat Knight was too busy preparing for his opening game as the new coach at Texas Tech to show up for his first news conference since replacing his father.

Instead, several players appeared Tuesday to discuss the surprising move that saw Hall of Fame coach Bob Knight resign and turn the team over to his son with 10 games left in the regular-season.

"Pat's doing a good job already," guard John Roberson said. "We're going to have the same preparations."

If his first full day on the job is any indication, it might be the same old Knight when it comes to dealing with the media. School officials said Pat Knight was busy attending meetings and preparing for Wednesday's game against Baylor.

Being the Texas Tech coach is a role for which Knight has been groomed the past three seasons, and perhaps his entire life. He played for his father at Indiana and has been with him since they arrived at Tech in 2001. He was chosen as his father's successor in 2005.

Pat Knight, whose personality is more subdued than his father's, has been a head coach twice, a partial season with the USBL's Columbus Cagerz and a season leading the Wisconsin Blast, which went 19-15.

The elder Knight said Monday he felt the timing was right to leave.

"There's a transition that's going to take place here from me to Pat, and I've dwelt on this all year long ... how it would be best for him and for the team and for what we can do in the long run to make this the best thing for Texas Tech," Knight told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, which first reported the resignation.

The consensus among peers is that Pat Knight is ready. He sounded that way Monday night on his radio show.

"It's kind of surreal right now," Pat Knight said. "But I didn't get into this business to be an assistant my whole life. It's always been a dream of mine, even as a kid. That's all I've been around is coaches."

In a decade as a college assistant, the only season Pat Knight wasn't with his father was the only season his father didn't coach in the last 40. He was at Akron in 2000-01 after Bob Knight was fired at Indiana.

"He was great on the floor, great with kids and had a good mind for the game," said former Akron coach Dan Hipsher, now an assistant at South Florida. "His game preps were excellent, his work in practice, his skill development with the kids. He was charismatic."

Knight's first game will be against Baylor coach Scott Drew, who replaced his own dad, Homer Drew, for a year at Valparaiso before taking over the Bears.

"I thought my dad did a great job preparing me to take over," Scott Drew said. "When I took over, he was very supportive. He did give me enough space to learn on my own and to be there if I needed him."

The expectation is the same in Lubbock, where Texas Tech guard Alan Voskuil shot down the notion that Bob Knight might resurface elsewhere. The Red Raiders expect to have him around awhile, even if he isn't their coach anymore.

"It's going to be great," Voskuil said. "I'm looking forward to it."

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