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Don Fischer has been the voice of the Indiana Hoosiers for over 40 years.
He has had the best seat in the house for generations of Indiana basketball teams mostly led by Bob Knight.
Fischer joined Dan Dakich on Monday for his weekly appearance to give his thoughts on Knight’s return, and why Indiana basketball is what it is at the current moment.
What’d he think of seeing Bob Knight back at Assembly Hall for the first time in 20 years?
“Well, I’m glad there has been closure,” Fischer told Dan.
“And I say that in a sense of the fanbase. I say that in sense of the former players – obviously it was a terrific group of guys that came to the game on Saturday. I mean there were almost 50 of them from the ‘70’s, ‘80’s, and ‘90’s all who played for Coach Knight.”
One thing that stood out on Saturday, especially when Knight was slowly making his way to the court, was the reaction of the folks inside Assembly Hall.
It almost felt like they didn’t know what to make of it for a second.
“I thought the fan reaction was interesting. Especially the student body. I mean these kids, most of them don’t even know who Bob Knight is, and some of them obviously do, but a lot of them don’t. I don’t know what they thought initially…I just think it was closure for a lot of people.”
The return was fine and dandy for the time being, but the end result on the court in Bloomington after that was the exact opposite.
IU was dominated in the second half by their rival Purdue for their fourth straight loss.
What’d Fischer think of the performance?
“Not much (laughs). Dak, it really bothers me right now what I see in this basketball team in the sense of leadership. I just don’t think that this team understands what they have on their chest. I don’t think they understand what Indiana basketball is really all about at this juncture, and what a great program this has been, and the tradition and all that stuff.”
Leadership is something that Fischer mentioned last week with Dan as well.
It’s not great when someone almost if not more synonymous with Indiana basketball than Bob Knight says you don’t understand what Indiana basketball is really about.
Why don’t the current Hoosiers get it?
“It’s a different world we live. It’s a world that no longer us dinosaurs can survive in,” Fischer said to Dan.
That’s the problem. I respect kids, and I understand it’s a different world, and they’ve been brought up differently, and all those kinds of things, but I still think there’s a toughness, a discipline that can be taught and they can be taught in a different way perhaps than what they used to be in some respects. But there’s still a factor there that has to be allowed to have happen from a coaching perspective. I think this coaching staff, at least from the standpoint of what they’re able to do in getting kids to pay attention and understand what it’s all about – they are hamstrung.”
Be sure to subscribe to The Dan Dakich Show podcast to hear more on Indiana basketball, and listen daily from Noon – 3 p.m.
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