Bobby Knight's Son: Rules, Schmules, Let My Dad Help Me Recruit

This was posted in the Fanshots by Acdixon and I am just getting around to waxing all indignant about it.  It seems that good old Bobby Knight violated NCAA bylaws by contacted players his son Pat, now the Lamar University head basketball coach, was recruiting:

Bob Knight, according to a report in the Indianapolis Star, spoke to high school prospects Jason Smith and Donnell Minton during their recruitment by Lamar coach Pat Knight. [link to Star story added by me]

This is indeed a secondary violation, and could have more than just slap-on-the-wrist implications depending upon when the violation occurred.  If it happened during the July recruiting period, it could cost Pat Knight and Lamar four recruiting contacts next year, as penalties are heightened during the July period.

The particular rule in question is this one:

13.1.2 Permissible Recruiters.
13.1.2.1 General Rule. All in-person, on- and off-campus recruiting contacts with a prospective student-athlete or the prospective student-athlete’s relatives or legal guardians shall be made only by authorized institutional staff members. Such contact, as well as correspondence and telephone calls, by representatives of an institution’s athletics interests is prohibited except as otherwise permitted in this section. Violations of this bylaw involving individuals other than a representative of an institution’s athletics interests shall be considered institutional violations per Constitution 2.8.1; however, such violations shall not affect the prospective student-athlete’s eligibility. (Revised: 8/5/04)

... and, more specifically ...

13.1.3.4 Permissible Callers.
13.1.3.4.1 Institutional Coaching Staff Members—General Rule. All telephone calls made to and received from a prospective student-athlete (or the prospective student-athlete’s parents, legal guardians or coaches) must be made and received by the head coach or one or more of the assistant coaches who count toward the numerical limitations in Bylaw 11.7.4 (see Bylaw 11.7.1.2). In bowl subdivision football and women’s rowing, such telephone calls also may be made and received by a graduate assistant coach, provided the coach has successfully completed the coaches’ certification examination per Bylaw 11.5.1.1. (Revised: 1/10/95, 1/9/96 effective 8/1/96, 1/12/04 effective 8/1/04, 4/27/06 effective 8/1/06, 5/26/06, 12/12/06, 12/15/06)

13.1.2.2 lists a number of exceptions, none of which include the father of the head basketball coach unless he is an "authorized institutional staff member," which Bob Knight is apparently not.

Of course, Pat Knight says this is all [expletive deleted]:

"At least I'm not paying them," Pat Knight continued. "The NCAA should look into guys that are paying players and not worry about guys that are doing it the right way. ... I don't care if my dad is a celebrity or not. I think it's (expletive), honestly. The guy is my dad. If he wants to say hello to a recruit, he can. If we get reprimanded, fine. They need to check into guys that are outright cheating instead of nickel-dime stuff like that."

Well, Pat, let's examine that logic for a moment.  How many basketball coaches in America would love to have a Hall of Fame former coach at their beck and call to help entice recruits to their school?  You see where I'm going here, Pat?  You see why this is a problem?  Please tell me you aren't as demagogic and blind to reality as your famous father.

Both father and son should be well aware of this rule, and since Bob Knight allegedly ran a clean program wherever he coached, it's hard to imagine that he did so without an understanding of the rules he was so stringently upholding.  This same rule, by the way, is what causes schools to have to report secondary violations when boosters contact recruits even without their knowledge.  How much more egregious is it when a storied former coach, renowned for his strict rules compliance, does it?

I think both father and son have some explaining to do, and expletive-laced rants about which rules are important and which aren't don't cut it in my opinion.

What do you think?

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