Former Indiana University basketball player Brian Evans knows how important coach Bob Knight was in his life.
Knight died Nov. 1 at age 83 at his Bloomington home, surrounded by family, according to a release by the family.
Knight, the sixth-winningest coach in NCAA Division I college basketball history, won three national championships in his 29 seasons as IU coach.
“It’s hard to encapsulate what this man has meant to my life,” said Evans, a Carmel resident who played for IU from 1992-96. “First off, he gave me an opportunity. From there, he pushed me every single day. He challenged me. He questioned my commitment to being a great teammate. He questioned my commitment to be a good player, that’s all he cared about. I tried my best to be what he wanted me to be. He was ’the best.’
“I’m just incredibly humbled and honored to have played for him, on his court, at Indiana University. I love Coach Knight.”
Evans, the 1996 Big Ten Most Valuable Player, was selected in the first round of the NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic. He played three seasons in the NBA before playing professionally in Italy and in other professional leagues.