This past Saturday at a speaking engagement in Indiana, Bob Knight said that the starters on Kentucky’s 2010 NCAA basketball tournament team “had not been to class that semester.”
(Audio of Williams’ comments on KentuckySportsRadio.com below)
Speaking to a group in Wabash, Indiana, Knight’s remarks were captured on video:
Knight’s exact quote was:
“Kentucky year before last started five players in the NCAA tournament that had not been to class that semester. That’s that one and none philosophy.”
University of Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart released a statement Monday night that reported Knight’s comment about the 2010 UK hoops team to be “blatantly erroneous.”
Tuesday ESPN college basketball analyst and former Duke basketball star Jay Williams appeared on KentuckySportsRadio.com to address Knight’s comments about Kentucky. After being read exactly what Knight said about the UK NCAA tournament team in question by show host Matt Jones, Williams said, in part:
He (Knight) does owe Kentucky an apology for that (statement) because those are accusations which are wrong.
Williams was later asked by Jones, “Do you believe ESPN as an entity, with Bobby Knight as an employee, should make a statement or address this in some way?“
Williams’ response to Jones’ question:
“I think ESPN should come to the table and do something about the comment because obviously it’s very demeaning to the players that play at Kentucky.”
More from Williams on Knight:
“I think those comments were wrong I think he does owe the fans at Kentucky an apology, but Bobby Knight is Bobby Knight and I’m sure he’s not going to give that apology.”
So will ESPN hold Knight accountable for what was clearly a blatantly - and possibly deliberately - false public proclamation?
From the last communication I had with ESPN officials this morning, it appears the network is trying to reach Knight before commenting as a company.
That said, I do believe ESPN will release a statement - with or without a Knight - soon.