Indiana Daily Student

Alumni donations in question following Knight termination

Bob Knight not only help the University on the courts, but off the courts as well. Knight made an effort to raise money for athletics and academics.\nNot only is the basketball program almost completely funded by outside donations, but Knight made large yearly personal contributions to the Main Library as well.\nSince the early 1990s, Knight has also given his support to several library endowment funds, including one that was founded in his name.\n"(Knight) recognized that the libraries are at the core of the educational experience for IU students," said Executive Director of Development for IU Libraries Beverly Byl. "Throughout the years, Bob Knight has been a real advocate for the library."\nThe Bob Knight Library Endowment helped the library pass the $1 million mark for fund raising. Knight also had a barbecue for his 50th birthday and donated all the proceeds to the Library.\nMoney from the Bob Knight Endowment has gone to purchase items in the information technology department, as well as tapes of American jazz performances for the music school library and several books by minority authors.\nAlthough the money from the endowment was a help to the Library, Byl said "funds continue to come in and new endowments continue to open."\nAdditionally, Barbara Coffman, director of communications for the IU Foundation, predicted the IU Foundation would have "another good year," despite Coach Knight's termination. Coffman said the Foundation set a record last year, with more than 100,000 donors.\nThe IU Varsity Club also collects money for IU Athletics, and last year, they collected more than $5 million for IU sports.\nRecently, Knight refused to attend Varsity Club fund-raisers, which are "the most popular and widely attended" said President Myles Brand. Scott Dolson, IU Varsity Club assistant director for development, said the "fund-raisers" Knight refused to attend were not actually fund-raisers, but rather kickoff luncheons for the basketball season. Dolson said that although people might not be happy with the decision to fire Knight, their support resides with the athletic program and not with one individual.\n"The athletic program stands for all the things Indiana basketball stood for," Dolson said. "Although this is a difficult and emotional time, the core of our donors' major concern is that we hold to our standards. And we have all the confidence in the world that we will strive to meet those standards."\nVice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations Christopher Simpson said he does not believe firing Knight will have a big effect on fund raising.\nSimpson points out that despite the turmoil that has surrounded IU this past year, "(the events) clearly did not have a negative effect on enrollment." \nNonetheless, Simpson also recognizes that there will be those people who will be happy with the decision, and those who will be upset.\nAlumni Ernest Olson said he is disappointed with the University's decision to fire Knight and said he will not support IU. Olson had planned to leave money to IU in his will.\n"(The decision) ripped my heart out ... I have taken the University off my list," he said.\nRex Burdette, a 1995 graduate, has also decided to withdraw his support and has started a mass e-mail to alumni throughout the country in support of Knight.\n"We are not going to support (IU) financially, or in any other fashion," he said.\nDespite the money Coach Knight has raised over the last 29 years, Coffman feels as though the University will not suffer.\n"IU is a lot bigger than any one person"

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