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Christopher Simpson, vice president for public affairs and government relations, said he has been receiving harassing phone calls and e-mails since former coach Bob Knight was fired. Simpson is the spokesperson for the University.\n"Mr. Simpson is one of the visible people," IU Trustee Dean Hertzler said. "He's the one who everybody sees and people associate him with the decision."\nKnight was fired as head coach of the basketball team Sunday for violating the University's "zero-tolerance" policy. Knight said Simpson was one of the major contributors in the decision to fire him.\n"Nobody screamed louder and longer for me to be fired than Simpson did at those meetings last Saturday," Knight said. "Simpson is a spin doctor. I don't know what else the guy is. He's about as treacherous and dangerous as anybody I've ever been around."\nHertzler said Simpson did not show enthusiasm towards Knight's firing nor did he try to speed up the process.\n"Christopher has not done that," Hertzler said. "He has been the spokesperson for the University. From my perspective, Christopher has not brought the topic up to me or other trustees. Knight's behavior would have been brought up at this week's board meeting anyway."\nSimpson said he is now worried about his family's safety. He has not been threatened by Knight. \n"I've certainly gotten unnerving e-mails and phone calls, as have other people around here," Simpson said, referring to Brand and freshman Kent Harvey. "It's very unfortunate when an athletic event denigrates to where it becomes personal."\nKnight said his relationship with Simpson is anything but personal, and that he does not trust Simpson in any way. But the coach does trust Bob Hammel, one of his closest friends and Herald-Times columnist. Hammel is like the coach's shadow. When Knight fails to remember a score, a game or a year ' which is a rare instance ' Hammel is his reference book.\nWednesday, Knight used him to prove a point about Simpson.\n"I've referred to Simpson for as long as I've known his as … and I'll let Bob see if he could come up with the phrase I've used to describe Simpson."\n"I've thought of several," Hammel said, laughing.\n"No, the phrase I've used most often," Knight said without smiling.\n"Oh, double agent."\n"How long have you heard me use that phrase to describe Simpson?"\n"As long as I've known Simpson."\nSimpson had only positive remarks for Knight after the coach's interview. He talked of Knight's national and conference championships, high graduation rates and charitable work.\n"That's gone with Bob Knight and that's where I feel the most sadness," Simpson said Tuesday evening. "I have unbelievable respect for Bob Knight."\nSimpson had little response to Knight's character attack.\n"I'm not going to characterize any of that," Simpson said. "I really don't have any comment about it. My job is to act as spokesperson for the University"
Pure. Sensitive. Genius.\nIt only took a few seconds for former Hoosier star Isiah Thomas to narrow Bob Knight down to those three words. Now Thomas wants those characteristics working for him and the Indiana Pacers.\nThere are eight players on the Pacers' roster under the age of 27, and Thomas told the IDS Tuesday that Knight is the best person to help them grow as players. \nBut Thomas wants Knight to help more than the players. \nHe wants Knight, who called himself an "unemployed teacher," to teach him again.\n"He and I have discussed some things that I would offer to him," said Thomas, a member of Knight's 1981 NCAA championship team. "We want him to come and kind of mentor me into coaching (and give) the insights that he has to the game from a consulting standpoint, just until he figures out what he wants to do. Clearly what he has to give to the game of basketball, I think anyone would want access to."\nAfter two years as a player for Knight, Thomas knows exactly what kind of a man he would be dealing with, should Knight accept his offer. But Knight has given no indication of future plans.\n"He's pure because he's so honest," Thomas said. "You always know exactly where he stands. Thomas said. "There aren't any guessing games with this guy. He's sensitive because when you're dealing with that kind of honesty, you're on a nerve, you're very raw with it. And when you talk about his genius, you talk about the way he is able to see things and take it off the blackboard and make it come to life."\n Thomas remembered a day in 1981 when Knight taught him a lesson he'll never forget. It's the kind of lesson he thinks the younger Pacers might benefit from, the kind of lesson that defines a player and a man. \n "We were going to play Illinois in our first Big Ten game. He didn't like the way we were playing," Thomas said. "I came to practice and he said 'Get out.' I turned around and I left. He threw me out of practice and everything. \n "I went and sat in the locker room, and I realized that I had no place to go. And if I leave, that means I'm a quitter and I'm not going to let him make me quit. I walked back out of the locker room and I walked on the floor, and I started practicing and he smiled and that was it. But that moment for me was when I became probably the player I should've been. But it was tough getting there. And we went on to win the national championship that year."\n Tuesday was a day of reminiscing for everyone gathered at Knight's house. Digger Phelps, Notre Dame's winningest coach and one of Knight's best friends, drove to Bloomington Monday night to lend Knight his support. Phelps laughed as he remembered how he and Knight went golfing together one day at West Point and had to go fishing in a stream for old golf balls because they were so poor.\nBut that was about the only laughing that went on at Knight's house Tuesday afternoon.\n"It was almost impossible for him to win here," Phelps said. "He's ready to move forward and it's over. He needs to be himself by himself.\n"I went through the same thing at Notre Dame the last few years and he trusts me. He wants to pick my brain, and he trusts my guidance. He needs his space. He has been the impact here for 30 years. To cut it all off, he's hurt by it, and that's only human nature."\nThomas doesn't know if Knight will accept his offer or not. But he does know that Knight is not ready to let the game go.\n"He's in love," Thomas said. "He's in love with the game of basketball, and it's a deep, passionate, up and down relationship. It's a thing to him. It hurts. He's in love with a woman who doesn't want him any more."\nIDS reporter Peter Newmann contributed to this report.
Bob Knight said that if he had taken a year to go out and find a place ideal for himself, he could not find a better place than Bloomington. He's uncovered the best hunting and fishing spots in the area. He also said the best crowds in the country are found in Assembly Hall. And certainly, the city is home to a few of his closest friends.\nWhile his home, nestled in the woods outside of Bloomington, has remained unchanged, the people in the University have changed. His friends at IU have come and gone. \nIn an interview with ESPN Tuesday evening, Knight said he has known for the past few years he didn't fit in with the new crowd. Knight said he didn't think he "had any chance to abide by the rules" and that the administration's allegations against him were a matter of interpretation. When questioned by the Indiana Daily Student Monday about the events surrounding the decision to fire him, Knight declined to comment.\nBrand said Sunday there were "many instances in the last 17 weeks in which Coach Knight has behaved and acted in both a defiant and hostile manner." Knight rebutted some of those accusations in his ESPN interview.\nKnight denied he was unwilling to work with athletics director Clarence Doninger, saying "there was nothing that came up where I needed to interact with the athletics director in any way." Knight also denied that he "verbally abused" University Counsel Dorothy Frapwell.\nWhen asked why he insisted on touching freshman Kent Harvey on the arm to teach a lesson of respect, Knight told ESPN that it is his nature, and he would approach the situation the same any day of the week.\n"What I did with that student was teach him about manners," Knight said.\nVice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations Christopher Simpson said the ESPN interview invoked in him a feeling of sadness.\n"It reminds me of the side of Bob Knight that we haven't talked about in the last 72 hours," Simpson said. "It's the side that brought us national championships and Big Ten championships and extraordinarily high graduation rates. And brought us a program devoid of NCAA problems. It's a man who spent a lot of time doing charitable work. That's gone with Bob Knight and that's where I feel the most sadness.\n"I have unbelievable respect for Bob Knight," Simpson said. "It's time for Knight to be heard and I'm glad he had that opportunity." \nKnight told ESPN that when he took the job as head coach at IU, he didn't know what the future would hold. Today, 29 years later, Knight is in the same position, calling himself an "unemployed teacher." Knight also told ESPN that the main reason he stayed, despite a desire to resign, was the players.\n"I probably should've gone somewhere else," Knight told ESPN. "There's a place that's a better fit for me as a basketball coach. I didn't do it because of the kids we have here. I have an obligation to the kids because they came to play for me."\nBefore he was fired, Brand said he gave Knight one more chance to resign at about 10:30 p.m. Friday and the coach declined. He has yet to give up his coaching career.\n"There are too many things I have yet to explore about the game of basketball," Knight said.\nBut now he must experiment somewhere else. \n"People always make things different. See, that's the big difference for me in the last four or five years as opposed to prior to that," Knight said. "Bear Bryant once said you have to have an iron clad contract to protect yourself from a time when the president would lose his guts. And I think what he was referring to then was that people change. And I've seen that. \n"I had five years at West Point that I really enjoyed and one year just wasn't particularly enjoyable because the people that were making decisions had changed."\nStaff reporter David Uchiyama contributed to this story.
Athletics director Clarence Doninger said he feels some pressure to name an interim head coach for the men's basketball team. He met with assistant coach Mike Davis last night to discuss the issue.\nDavis said Monday afternoon he wants the job. All Doninger has to do is ask. \nDoninger said an interim head coach could be named as early as today, because he wants the decision made "as soon as possible."\n"As time goes, emotion grows," said Davis, as he watched the news of Dane Fife's transfer scroll across the bottom of a TV. "You try to make decisions with a clear head, but it's difficult when you feel like this. I'm sad and I'm a little scared because I don't know what's going on. I've got bills to pay."\nOne person in Assembly Hall who is sure of what comes next is assistant coach Pat Knight. He's leaving and will follow his father to a new coaching job.\n"I'm out of here," Pat Knight said. "I wouldn't stay in this place after the way they treated my father. There's no way. I'm going to be coaching with my father somewhere else. \n"He's got a good five or six years left in him to coach. A hall of fame coach that's available is a pretty hot commodity in my book. It doesn't end here, it will just be a new good beginning for him."\nDavis said the past three years have been a dream come true for him because he's been able to learn from Bob Knight. But if the players leave, Davis said it is likely he will look for a job as a head coach somewhere else.\n"It was a great honor for me to work for Coach Knight because you learn basketball from the best," Davis said. "I've learned a lot. That's why I came here, to be a head coach.\nDoninger said he and Vice President for Administration Terry Clapacs met with Davis and assistant coach John Treloar Sunday evening and told them they would like the coaches to remain on staff, not necessarily as interim coach. Doninger said he realizes the players are looking for more. Clapacs said six players spoke with him and Doninger at about 3:30 p.m. Monday.\n"The players have definitely indicated they want some continuity or they're going to explore other possibilities. That is correct," Doninger said. "I wouldn't say it's an ultimatum; the players have expressed a strong desire to have some continuity in the program, in particular they would like the same system, they would like John Treloar and Mike Davis to be involved because that's what they were expecting for this year, and this has been a jolt to their system."\nWhile Doninger and Clapacs work, the families of those involved wait. Les Fertig, who was recently hired as an administrative assistant, said he left his job as an assistant coach at Ohio State to work with Bob Knight. Now he doesn't know where he stands.\n"Now I'm kind of in limbo, and it's very disruptive to my family," Fertig said. "We just don't know what the next step is. It's very disruptive. Nobody seems to have an understanding of what comes next."\nDavis said the upheaval has been difficult for his wife and two kids. The couple just bought a house in Indianapolis, and they're worried about two mortgages. \nTamilya is concerned about having to move again and is trying to keep life normal for their two sons, Antwaan, 2, and Michael, 13.\n"It's hard not knowing. That's the hardest part," Tamilya said. "And being so late in the year, wondering if he has a chance to get a job, if that's even a possibility ... That's why he's in this, that's the ultimate goal. He doesn't want to be an assistant all his life -- nobody does."\nTreloar was unavailable for comment.
Junior Kirk Haston sat in the men's locker room Sunday morning letting the news sink in. Then he went to church and prayed. It wasn't the first time Haston has had someone close to him taken away. And to him, coach Bob Knight is a father-figure.\nBasketball trainer Tim Garl informed Haston, a junior forward, around 10 a.m. that Knight had been fired. The University gave an official announcement at 3:15 p.m. Sunday at the IU-Purdue University at Indianapolis campus. Haston and the rest of the team attended the press conference to voice their support for Knight, and they agreed the future of the team is uncertain.\n"It's like a family loss to me," said Haston, whose mother passed away about a year ago. "I've only had one other experience in my life that would overshadow this as far as emotionally where I've been the last couple of days. To have that support for so long and to have that taken away is very disheartening."\nA replacement coach has yet to be named and no candidates have been mentioned, but redshirt freshman forward George Leach said he will leave the program if either assistant coaches Mike Davis or John Treloar are not named as interim head coach.\n"President Brand is being a coward not sticking up for coach Knight and what he's done here at IU," Leach said. "I red-shirted a year, a long year, waiting to play for coach Knight. And now President Brand and his trustees have taken that dream away from me."\nJunior guard Dane Fife said he would "greatly consider leaving" if Davis or Treloar were not chosen as interim coach, but that conversations with athletics director Clarence Doninger left him under the assumption the coaches will remain in their position.\n"(Davis and Treloar) are here with us, they've lived and died with us," Fife said. "I've spoken with them this morning and there is no way they would leave us."\nAs students rally on campus following the press conference, freshman guard A.J. Moye leaned against Davis, resting his head on the coach's shoulder. Jeffrey Newton stood next to them with a dazed look in his eyes.\nThe quiet coach was unsure of what would happen next for all of them.\n"I don't know what's going through my head," Davis said. "I'm just trying to wait and see what's going on. I'm at a loss for words."\nDavis said he wasn't planning on teaching the "Coaching Basketball" class which meets Tuesday, and that he doesn't know who will be there. Davis met with the players during the rally, but said the entire program is waiting for Knight to return from a trip to Canada before any internal decisions are made.\n"I'm going to try to get in touch with him as soon as possible," Haston said. "I really do take in everything he says. (Knight's) opinion and what he thinks is in my best interests (are going to be things) I'll really take into consideration. And I'm going to ask him what he thinks is in the best interests of the team."\nWhen the players met with Brand after the football game Saturday, they had the job of informing the president about what they felt was in "the best interests of the team." Leach said he didn't get the impression Brand was listening closely.\n"We had to contact him yesterday at the football game for him to meet us eye to eye. I've never even seen the man. He kept repeating the same thing over and over, 'We'll do what's best for the University.' And I was like, 'OK, what about the program, what about us?'"\nBrand said he recognized the players' message, but that the team was not the No. 1 priority in the decision-making process.\n"The players are important to us," Brand said. "In the end, the single most important element was the future of Indiana University and we need to move on from here. We need to go forward."\nBut the players, especially the younger ones like freshman Andre Owens, said they don't know where to go from here. Owens said if the current coaching staff stays, he'll stay.\n"It doesn't make any sense," said Owens, one of the team's top recruits.\n"All this talent comes in here and the next thing you know, the season's about to get started and our coach is gone. What are we supposed to do, sit back and wait until we get a coach? I would've went somewhere else if I would've known it was going to be like this"
A white paper plate was pinned to the back of sophomore Jim Wisco's red "Indiana Hoosiers" T-shirt as he cheered for the IU football team Saturday. Wisco scribbled black letters on the plate showing his distaste (to put it tactfully) for freshman Kent Harvey. The pin attaching the plate to his shirt read, "Friends and fans of RMK."\nA huge white sheet was draped on one of the apartment porches across from Memorial Stadium. It read, "We love Bob Knight." \nInside the stadium, the excitement of the IU football team's opening day against North Carolina State was tainted by an aura of student concern for basketball coach Bob Knight. There were cheers in favor of the coach and chants disrespecting the freshman who accused Knight of grabbing him by the arm and cursing at him in Assembly Hall Thursday. The football game was the first major campus-wide sporting event since the allegations were made early Friday, and it was used as a forum by many students to voice their support of the coach. \n"I think it's pretty low," Wisco said of Harvey's accusations against Knight. "I think it's awful. What does (Harvey) have to gain? Maybe he thought it was funny. Maybe he got quite a kick out of it. I don't know."\nBut Kyle Harvey, Kent's brother, insists there is nothing to gain but an apology.\n"I don't want attention, I just want to go to school," said Kyle, who went to Knight's basketball camp in the sixth grade with Kent. "There's no reason for anyone to be mad at us. We did nothing wrong. It's like a nightmare."\nAs of about 7 p.m. Saturday, 904 votes were cast in the IDS digital poll, an unscientific survey of readers, and 82 percent said Knight "will survive the allegations." Another 15 percent said he would not and four percent were undecided.\nSenior David Eaton said he's heard Knight address the student body before and that he respects the coach's philosophies, but Knight doesn't always practice what he preaches.\n"Sometimes I think he has a temper that he can't control," Eaton said. "If he can control his temper, I think everyone and their brother would flock to him and be at his every step. I can respect him for his fundamentals, but when you have to read about him once a month in the paper for beating on somebody, it's not the kind of guy you want to look up to."\nJeromie Jones, a freshman from Palmyra, Ind., waited more than an hour Friday afternoon with a pack of student fans for Knight to leave his 5:30 p.m. press conference. Once Knight left the media room, the roar of support drowned out the testimony of assistant coach Mike Davis, who was with Knight when the incident occurred.\n"He might have made mistakes in the past, but all people screw up now and then," Jones said Friday. "We're all here supporting Knight and his program because he's done a lot of positive things"
The IU basketball team met with President Myles Brand at about 3:45 p.m. today to voice its support for coach Bob Knight, said junior guard Dane Fife. \nKnight, who was placed under a "zero-tolerance" sanction in May, is facing accusations that he cursed at and forcefully grabbed freshman Kent Harvey for disrespecting him Thursday afternoon. The IU Police Department is investigating the incident. \n"I feel really positive about what came out in the meeting," Fife said. "President Brand said some things that were real positive. We're waiting for the police investigation to come out. That's the key to the whole thing."\nIU Vice President for Public Relations and Government Affairs Christopher Simpson said the investigation should be completed within 72 hours, after Brand confers with the board of trustees and decides what will be the next step. The board of trustees will not meet with Brand this weekend.\n"The investigation is not completed and will not be for at least a couple more days," Simpson said. "To say a decision has been made is a little premature"
Coach Bob Knight sat in "the cave" of Assembly Hall, a room where he often spends hours reviewing game and practice tape, with his legs crossed and dark brows raised. He does a lot of thinking in that room, but Friday he seemed puzzled.\nIn the wake of another allegation against him, Knight wondered why the University implemented a "zero-tolerance" policy in May, but has not yet informed him what it entails. \nAthletics Director Clarence Doninger said the policy will likely be outlined at a Sept. 15 meeting of the IU Board of Trustees. \nBut Knight is being investigated now.\nAccusations were made early Friday that Knight verbally and physically assaulted freshman Kent Harvey for disrespecting the coach by calling him by his last name. Knight denied the allegations.\nWhile the IU Police Department investigates the claim, and Harvey considers pressing charges against the coach, Knight's future at the University is as uncertain as the policy. \n"I don't think my definition (of zero-tolerance) is the one that's applicable," Knight told the IDS. "I'd like to know what somebody else thinks - but nobody's been able to give me a definition."\nFriday, Knight was unable to give an answer as to whether he would retire before his contract expires in 2002. \n"I don't know," he said. "We'll just have to wait and see."\nKnight added he was "very sick" of the controversies he has endured in the past few months. \nThe only concrete restrictions on the coach since the May 15 culmination of a four-month IU Board of Trustees investigation, were a three-game suspension and a $30,000 fine.\nAt the time, IU President Myles Brand said Knight will be fired immediately if it can be verified the coach had "inappropriate physical conduct" with anyone while employed by the University. Brand added Knight could be fired for failing to act with "appropriate decorum and civility."\nMark Shaw, Harvey's stepfather, said Knight grabbed his stepson above his right elbow, "yanked him around, got in his face and started yelling at him." Shaw said his stepson told him Knight used profanities.\nKnight compared the complaint to an incident in June of 1999 when he was accused of making a racist remark and choking a man who confronted him at the Nuestro Mexico restaurant in Ellettsville.\n"I don't think that the whole thing - from an accusation standpoint - is a lot different than the deal at the Mexican restaurant, where the whole thing was a farce," Knight said.\nKnight was never charged or punished in any way for that incident. Other complaints lodged against Knight, including "inappropriate contact" with former player Neil Reed, provoked the University into developing the zero-tolerance policy. When the University announced the decision to keep Knight and force him to adhere to a new code of conduct, even Doninger said it was unspecific.\n"To have a zero tolerance process in the future, we've seen how hard that is to follow in some of the school systems," Doninger told the IDS in a May 16 article. "We've seen some cases where zero-tolerance can lead to unusual circumstance, unusual results."\nDoninger said Friday that all inquiries regarding the recent allegation were to be directed to Christopher Simpson, IU vice president for public relations and government affairs.\nWhile camera crews and reporters swarmed Assembly Hall, Knight had a few questions of his own.\n"Let me ask you this; can you imagine ... being placed under these sanctions and grabbing some kid and screaming at him and cursing at him in a public place?" Knight asked. "There's one thing I'm not - and that's dumb. I've had restrictions placed on me, and whether I agree with those restrictions or not is not the point. The point is that if I coach, I have to live with these restrictions"