IU's decision to fire Knight is upheld

Updated: October 7, 2003, 9:01 AM ET
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS -- A judge on Monday sided with Indiana University in Bob Knight's breach-of-contract lawsuit over his firing as the school's basketball coach three years ago.

Monroe Circuit Court Judge Kenneth Todd granted the university's motion for summary judgment, effectively dismissing Knight's lawsuit without a trial.

"The university from the start has said that it followed the provisions of the contract and fulfilled its obligations, and the court has agreed," school spokeswoman Jane Jankowski said.

Messages seeking comment from Knight's attorney, Russell Yates, were left at his office and home in Denver.

Knight was fired in 2000 for violating a "zero tolerance" behavior policy by grabbing the arm of a student who he said greeted him by his last name. Knight sued two years later, claiming the university violated his employment contract. Knight, who was at Indiana for 29 years and won three national championships, is the basketball coach at Texas Tech.

Knight's lawsuit claimed the firing cost him more than $2 million in media and clothing contracts as well endorsements and camps.

In a hearing last month, university attorneys argued the school fulfilled its obligation to Knight by continuing to pay him after his firing.

In his ruling, Todd wrote that whether Knight "was discharged with or without cause becomes a distinction without a difference in so far as his compensation is concerned."


Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press