Last month Don Fischer, the legendary voice of the Indiana Hoosiers mentioned on a radio show that former coach Bob Knight's health was in decline:
"I hesitate to say anything about that right now because coach Knight is not well," Fischer said. "He's going through some major issues and it hurts me to even talk about it just because a man with that kind of a mind, who was so tremendous at coaching the game of basketball, and you know, at the age that we get to at this point in our lives, you want to keep thinking that that brain is never going to go away, and it appears that's a real problem for him right now and what he's dealing with."
Last night Knight appeared at Center Grove High School in Greenwood, IN with longtime friend and former Bloomington Herald-Times writer Bob Hammel for "An Evening with Bob Knight." It became apparent on several occasions that Fischer had been referring to the 78-year old's memory and mental acuity:
There were also uncomfortable moments as the former IU basketball coach seemed to forget his wife had already been introduced, said former player Landon Turner had passed away and repeated a story about a game — replacing Damon Bailey for Michael Jordan as the subject of the anecdote.
Knight, who sat in a chair on stage next to friend and former Bloomington Herald-Times editor Bob Hammel, would stare into the audience without reacting as Hammel told stories about the coach and his legendary career. When Hammel finished, more than 20 times, Knight said to him, "Well, I'm surprised you knew that."
The first time he said it, the audience erupted into laughter. As it continued, concern grew.
Knight turned 78 in October. He graduated from Ohio State in 1962 with a degree in history and government.