Mike ‘Coach K’ Krzyzewski and Bobby Knight are widely considered two of the greatest collegiate basketball coaches of all time. Their legacies speak for themselves, as do their temperaments.
That latter point ultimately played a significant role in why these one-time friends ultimately ceased having a relationship.
Ian O’Connor, the author of Coach K: The Rise and Reign of Mike Krzyzewski, recently shared the details of where precisely the pair’s relationship went awry.
The breaking point was a dinner engagement where Krzyzewski attempted to speak to Knight, only to get ignored.
“Knight was sitting in a corner table…and Mike went over to him and got down on a knee just to see him eye to eye, and everyone else kind of continued their conversations,” former Army player John Mikula said (via the New York Post).
“Mike got up, walked away, and went over and stood outside the room and said, ‘That’s the last f–king time. That’s it.’ And it was a disaster.”
Jim Oxley agreed with that characterization of events.
“Mike came in and said, ‘How are you doing, Coach?’ And [Knight] barely even hesitated and continued with his story, that kind of thing,” Oxley said. “That was the start of it. That was one of many straws that broke the camel’s back. I remember Mike walking out of there saying, ‘That’s it. I’ll never do this again.’”
And that was it. That’s how quickly relationships can change.
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Coach K has been in the news quite a bit over the past year. Sometimes for good things; other times for not-so-good things. No matter what, though – his legacy is etched in stone at this point. And no matter how good of a coach Knight was, it’s hard to make the case that he is superior to Krzyzewski in that regard.