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MIke Beas: Will Bob Knight show up?


Is he or isn't he? Will he or won't he? And if he does, will his acceptance speech qualify as mean-spirited or be so ridiculously sweet that it has those in attendance dabbing their eyes? Now the biggie: will he position himself behind the microphone modeling a somewhat larger replica of one of his hideous plaid sportscoats from the 1970s?

No one knows because when it comes to Bob Knight, no one does. The man's demeanor has been as directionally predictable as a ping-pong ball in a typhoon.

Indiana University's decision to induct its former men's basketball coach into the school's Athletics Hall of Fame nine years after pointing him toward the unemployment line is the ultimate no-brainer on paper. Whether Knight, he of the three national championships in Bloomington, actually attends the Nov. 6 event is fast becoming a topic of great interest.

At this point nothing is embedded in cement other than the fact Myles Brand won't be asked to introduce Knight. Or Dale Brown. Or Connie Chung. Or any member of the San Juan police department. Or any sportswriter not named Bob Hammel. Or Neil Reid. Let's see, Pete Newell and Henry Iba have passed away, which clearly rules them out, so I'm leaning toward Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski doing the honors.

Again, what do I know? When it comes to Knight, what do any of us know?

Now a short bounce-pass from 69-years-old, which he turns Oct. 25, Knight long ago separated himself geographically, emotionally and perhaps even spiritually from Indiana University, which relieved him of his duties as men's basketball coach on Sept. 10, 2000.

Memories of Knight will live forever - the titles, the chair, the hundreds of lives positively impacted - but the man won't. Now is the time. He's been invited back to Bloomington, and hopefully Knight graciously accepts and one last time, for one final evening, holds an entire basketball-adoring state captive.

Grand entrances are welcome.

EARTH TO LOU: Don't know if he's been mentally affected by nearly drowning in his own spittle over the years or whether some Woodstock leftover slipped something whacky in his Metamucil, but former Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz has officially lost his mind.

Taking his homerism to new levels, Holtz has done the impossible by taking the heat off fellow broadcasting moron Beano Cook ("Ron Pawlus will win two Heisman Trophies") by predicting a Florida-Notre Dame matchup in the 2010 Bowl Championship Series title game inside the Rose Bowl.

All together now. Huh?

Would this be the same Notre Dame that ranked 100th nationally in rushing in 2008 by averaging a less-than-stellar 109.7 yards per game or the one scheduled to play in Ann Arbor, Pittsburgh and Palo Alto with home games lined up opposite traditional butt thorns Michigan State, USC and Boston College?

In Holtz's defense, the Irish schedule is softer than it's been in years, so in a way I see where he's going with this. If Notre Dame completes the regular season with fewer than 10 victories and a major bowl bid tucked in its back pocket, coach Charlie Weis should return 30 percent of his salary to the university.

But to accomplish what Holtz thinks the Irish can accomplish, Notre Dame must run the table. Given the above statistics, it would appear it has difficulty running anywhere.







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