Before becoming a college basketball coaching legend, Robert Montgomery Knight was a child growing up in Orrville, Ohio. According to his family, he was born with natural athletic ability even before being introduced to basketball at an early age. With his apparent love and talent for sports, specifically basketball, Knight began a journey that would make him legendary.
Knight attended Orrville High School and played all four years earning the Most Valuable Player award in 1957. After graduating in 1958, Knight was selected to play for the Ohio State Buckeyes. He was on the team for three years as a supporting player when the Buckeyes won the 1960 NCAA championship.
Soon after, Bobby left to become the head coach at West Point at age 24. This move earned him the title of being the youngest varsity coach in major college history. What he did not accomplish as a player, Knight made up for as a coach. The Army team led the nation in team defense for three consecutive years under Knight’s tutelage. Knight coached the Army for seven years and, he has been quoted as saying leaving his coaching job at West Point was ‘‘the toughest decision in (his) life.”
Knight left West Point to take the head coaching position at Indiana University. At Indiana, Knight finally could live out his dream as a Big 10 coach. His success in the Mid-West was measured by Knight's ability to instill quality fundamentals in the players. His expertise and methods helped to earn Knight four ‘‘Coach of the Year’’ awards in 1975, 1976, 1987 and 1989. Knight ended his coaching at Indiana. He accepted the head coaching position at Texas Tech University in 2001 -- after almost 30 years in Indiana.
Knight currently leads the Red Raiders in his sixth season as coach. Since his arrival, the Red Raiders have advanced to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA tournament. Knight continues his quest to break the record for all-time wins as a NCAA Division 1 basketball coach. He trails former North Carolina coach Dean Smith at 879 wins. Along with his coaching accomplishments, Knight is the youngest coach to reach 200, 300 and 400 wins. The Raiders win over Nebraska in 2003 marked Knight’s 800th win.