Indiana Basketball: Examining the All-Time Bob Knight Team

Isiah Thomas, Bob Knight, Indiana Basketball. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Isiah Thomas, Bob Knight, Indiana Basketball. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /
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Much of the Indiana basketball success over the past century came under the leadership of Bob Knight. This isn’t the only stretch of successful basketball for the Hoosiers, but what Knight built in Bloomington certainly stands out in college basketball history.

After winning a national championship as a player at Ohio State, Knight began his coaching career and became head coach at Army only a few seasons later. After coaching Mike Krzyzewski and a few other Black Knights, he’d head to Indiana to take the top job in 1971 and wouldn’t relinquish that post for nearly three decades.

While head coach of the Hoosiers, Knight would lead the program to three national championships, cutting down the nets in 1976, 1981, and 1987. That first team was college basketball’s most recent undefeated champion and featured some of the finest players Knight would ever coach.

Knight led the Hoosiers to five Final Fours and a slew of success in the Big Ten up until he stepped aside in 2000 after 29 years at the helm. His firing and his throwing of a chair across the court many years earlier were certainly negative moments, but he did a lot of good in that nearly thirty-year run.

Across that stretch of time, Knight came into contact with hundreds of college athletes and coached a great number of successful players while at Indiana. Today, we’ll be diving back into these years when Knight led the Indiana program in an attempt to build the all-time lineup from his former players.

We’ll be identifying two players from each of the five starting positions, while also beginning with sixth men, two extra pieces who didn’t fit into the starting lineup but were quite notable as Hoosiers. With 29 years to choose from, we’re clearly going to leave a lot of talent off the list. That being said, the twelve players were about to mention were each monumental to success at Indiana.