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Indiana students march on campus to protest Knight's dismissal


In this story:

Student complained of force

'One last chance'

A coaching legend

RELATED STORIES, SITES icon



BLOOMINGTON, Indiana (CNN) -- Chanting "We love Bobby," about 2,000 students marched on Indiana University's campus Sunday to protest controversial basketball coach Bob Knight's dismissal.

Riot police stood by as the demonstrators, who were mostly orderly, gathered at the university's Assembly Hall. Many protesters carried signs and chanted slogans.

  AUDIO

Listen to the two versions of the incident at Indiana University

Kent Harvey's accusation

946K/44 sec.
AIFF or WAV sound

Bob Knight responds

1MB/51 sec.
AIFF or WAV sound

Mark Shaw says his opinions did not affect his stepson's charge

225K/11 sec.
AIFF or WAV sound

Some Indiana University fans are tired of the Knight saga

286K/14 sec.
AIFF or WAV sound
 

Riot police also stopped students who marched to downtown Bloomington. The students were ordered to return to their dorms. The protesters dispersed, but many returned to Assembly Hall.

Later, some crowds protested in front of IU President Myles Brand's home.

Student complained of force

Knight, 59, was fired earlier in the day after university officials decided that he violated the zero-tolerance guidelines recently imposed on him by the university's athletic department. He had coached the university's team for 29 years.

Knight was in Canada when word emerged of his dismissal. He returned to Bloomington on Sunday night, but offered no comment.

The coach was accused last week of grabbing a freshman male student by the arm while lecturing him about manners. The alleged incident was one in a series of what the school termed a "pattern of unacceptable behavior" by Knight.

On Friday, university officials said they had launched a new investigation into accusations from student Kent Harvey that Knight grabbed his arm, restrained him and used obscenities. The student had addressed Knight by his last name.

"He used force against me and restrained me," Harvey said. "I don't know. He scared the hell out of me basically." Knight denied the allegation during a news conference on Friday night.

'One last chance'

During a news conference at the university's sister campus in Indianapolis, Brand said the school could no longer tolerate Knight's behavior.

"We have given ... Bob Knight one last chance, and he's failed to take full advantage of that opportunity," Brand said.

Brand said that there had been "many incidents" during the past 17 weeks in which Knight had failed to control his temper, and that last week's incident by itself would not have led to the coach's dismissal.

"Bob Knight made his own decision. Given that last chance, he did not fulfill the opportunity," Brand told CNN.

He said that Knight would be paid his approximate $170,000 annual salary until the end of his contract, which expires in June 2002. Brand said the university would immediately begin searching for a new basketball coach.

A coaching legend

Brand said that he did not take the decision lightly, but added that he felt he had no option given the "continued pattern of unacceptable behavior" by Knight.

"Unquestionably, this is the most difficult decision I have ever had to make," Brand said.

Knight is considered a legend. He was one of the most successful college basketball coaches, having won three National Collegiate Athletic Association, or NCAA, titles.

He led his team to 15 consecutive NCAA championship tournament appearances. Knight is one of 13 coaches in college basketball history to win 700 games. He was inducted into the National Basketball Hall of Fame in 1991.



RELATED STORIES:
Stepfather of freshman in Knight altercation still hopes for apology
September 10, 2000
Bob Knight could be fired after latest allegations
September 9, 2000
Reaction to Bob Knight punishment as controversial as the coach
May 16, 2000
Indiana president: Knight can stay, with conditions
May 15, 2000
Bob Knight releases public statement
May 13, 2000
Chronology of allegations against Bob Knight
May 12, 2000

RELATED SITES:
Indiana University
  • IU reports results of Knight review, announces sanctions against coach
NCAA Basketball.net: The official Web Site of NCAA Basketball

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