For just about every victory Bob Knight brought to Indiana there was a confrontation, an outburst, a chilling glare.
The three NCAA championships were offset by the chair, the choke and a last chance.
The 11 Big Ten titles were matched by tirades, technicals and transfers.
After 29 seasons of success and controversy, the Bob Knight Era is over at Indiana and it's very unlikely there will ever be another tenure like his anywhere.
Only two schools -- UCLA with 11 and Kentucky with seven -- have won more than the three national championships Knight won with Indiana in 1976, 1981 and 1987. The 1976 team -- considered one of the best in college basketball history -- is the last to finish a season unbeaten.
Yet it was never a highlight moment from that perfect season that was shown when Knight was talked about. Instead, it was the replay of Knight throwing an orange plastic chair across the court in a game against Purdue in 1985.
Over the last five months the grainy tape of Knight placing his hand on Neil Reed's throat at practice in 1997 was shown many more times than the clip of Keith Smart sticking that corner jumper in the Superdome to give Indiana its most recent title.
Instead of keeping count of how many wins Knight needs to pass Dean Smith as college basketball's winningest coach -- 116 -- people will be recounting how many transgressions there were from May 15, the day the zero-tolerance policy went into effect, until Sunday, when school president Myles Brand recalled the phone conversation that ended a nearly three-decade long relationship.
It was just three years after his playing career at Ohio State ended in 1962 with a third straight Final Four appearance that Knight was appointed head coach at West Point. The military academy seemed a perfect fit for a taskmaster who believed in discipline. His final season at Army, 1970-71, was his only losing one in six years there.
The Bloomington campus, the Big Ten Conference and the college basketball world would never be the same after Robert Montgomery Knight was selected as Indiana's coach that day in 1971.
The state that professes a love for basketball unlike any other had no problem adopting an Ohioan. The wins were great and the motion offense and intense man-to-man defense were pure basketball. The no-nonsense approach to life on and off the court was perfect for the Midwest in the 1970s.
The championships made it even better. It wasn't a joke when people said Bob Knight was the most popular man in Indiana.
Knight grabbing player Jim Wisman by the shirt after a couple of turnovers made a graphic photo but was forgiven as a coach making a point.
A run-in with Puerto Rico police during the 1979 Pan American Games was explained as a misunderstanding.
Suddenly, there were more and more problems to explain. The second national championship was marred when Knight threw an LSU fan into a garbage can. The detractors' number started to grow.
The coach added the Olympic gold medal to his resume in 1984 but was criticized for a run-in with an interpreter.
Then came things like an outburst against a moderator at an NCAA news conference, the displaying of a bull whip, kicking his son on the bench, an accidental head butt of a player and the growing list of players who transferred out of the program.
When the tape of Knight grabbing Reed surfaced, a 763-289 record and a squeaky clean record with the NCAA wasn't good enough to hold off the critics any longer.
The school instituted the zero-tolerance policy in May and the grabbing of a student's arm Thursday was the last of several violations that led to Knight's dismissal.
Following a college basketball coaching legend has never been easy at any school. Succeeding Knight at Indiana -- whether it's someone in house as the current players want or an outsider -- will not be easy.
The microscope and zero-tolerance policy will still be there, along with one of the best records any coach ever put together.
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