Aug. 15, 2005
There are so many reality shows on television these days -- shows like "Survivor" and "Apprentice," shows that feature stars like Bobby Brown, Venus and Serena Williams, and even Hulk Hogan.
I love the fact that ESPN will present a reality show called "Knight School." That's right, it features Texas Tech coach Bob Knight, as students compete to become a walk-on for Tech for the 2006-07 season. The show is slated to begin filming in September but won't air until February.
A total of six one-hour episodes will determine a winner. It won't be easy, as contestants go through conditioning drills and get their basketball IQ tested by the the General himself, Robert Montgomery Knight.
|"Knight School" contestants will benefit from Knight's intensity, if they take it the right way.|
It will be like a class, the theory of Basketball 101, under Dr. Knight. It also will be a course in the principles of life. It will be a challenge of work ethic and endurance.
Even for those players who don't make the team, they will certainly learn a lot from a teacher like Knight. This is the experience of a lifetime for them, an opportunity to gain knowledge from a man who should become the winningest Division I coach of all-time in the near future.
It will be interesting to watch these players learn about what it takes to make it in the game of life. They will learn how to get the most out of their bodies in the pursuit of excellence.
I define winning as the ability of an individual to do his best in an effort to reach his goal. That is what the General will require.
If they take it in the right way -- and it will be intense -- the students will have a learning experience they will treasure for the rest of their lives. Let's hope Knight gives them a great performance and does what he does best: getting the most out of his people.
Yes, I can hear the critics screaming about profanity, Knight's past incidents, etc. I simply ask: Has he shown a great deal of integrity, has he graduated players, and has he won basketball games the right way? You have never heard of an NCAA investigation of players from a Knight-led team.
From the moment he stepped on the sidelines at West Point, he has been one of the great leaders in our sport. His players have learned about loyalty, punctuality, respect and determination. They have learned to sweat and work hard the all-American way.
A practice session under the direction of Knight is a unique experience. The student-athletes in "Knight School" will find out about that experience. It should be an interesting show to watch.
Dick Vitale coached the Pistons and the University of Detroit before broadcasting ESPN's first college basketball game in 1979. Send a question to Vitale for possible use on ESPNEWS.