|Knight talks basketball, retirement with announcers Nantz, Packer|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 02 April 2008 14:49|
Joining former President George H.W. Bush at a forum Wednesday, Knight was noncommittal when announcer Jim Nantz asked if he'd ever consider coaching again.
``I don't know,'' Knight said. ``I enjoyed coaching (but) I like fishing. I like helping my wife around the house ... nobody could have enjoyed coaching and the people I've gotten to know more than I have.''
Knight, who resigned from Texas Tech in February as the winningest coach in NCAA Division I history with 902 victories, joined Nantz and commentator Billy Packer at the event billed as a ``Final Four Forum.''
M men's and women's basketball teams.
When asked who they liked to win the tournament this weekend, they all avoided a direct answer, instead musing on leadership and concentration and sharing anecdotes of Knight's Final Four teams.
Knight won three championships at Indiana. Memphis, UCLA, Kansas and North Carolina are in the Final Four this year.
``I just think that in this setting concentration is the most important thing,'' Knight said. ``The team that wins will not make a lot of great plays, but it won't make many mistakes.''
Packer will call his 34th consecutive Final Four this weekend and the semifinal game will mark his 100th Final Four game. Nantz has joined him since 1991.
Knight does have some thoughts about the makeup of the tournament and proposed upping the number of teams that qualify for it to 128 to ensure the best teams are included.
``I think 128 is perfect,'' he said. ``Extend it a week if you have to.''
Not surprisingly, the fiery coach has strong opinions about a number of subjects including the introduction of the 3-point shot into basketball (terrible), the Hall of Fame (not a fan) and college administrators (not too fond of them, either.)
He shared his thoughts on the school administrators when asked about Sean Sutton resigning as coach at Oklahoma State under pressure on Tuesday. Sutton took over for his father, Eddie Sutton, two years ago.
Knight's son, Pat, took over as Texas Tech coach after his resignation.
``As great as the NCAA tournament is, one thing that has effected coaches is not getting into it for two or three years,'' he said. ``I think that school administrators have a tremendous lack of understanding of what their team is capable of doing.''
Knight criticized the Hall of Fame for allowing international candidates to be enshrined, while ignoring Packer and ESPN's Dick Vitale. Nantz, a University of Houston graduate, expressed his disappointment at former Cougars coach Guy V. Lewis' omission from it. Lewis is in the College Basketball Hall of Fame.
``There are some people there that I look at and I say, 'What was it that he contributed?''' Knight said. ``Dick Vitale and Billy are far more deserving for their contributions to the game.''
Packer, who is on the hall's board of directors, got into a spirited debate with Knight about the inclusion of international contributors and said it should be all inclusive.
``It is a very, very difficult thing for an American coach or player who has not won national championships ... to get in there,'' Packer said of Lewis.
Lewis, who is 86 and in poor health, retired with 592 wins. His teams made five Final Four appearances, but never won a title.