Billy Donovan and Bobby Knight are two of just three people (Dean Smith being the third) to play in a Final Four and win a national title as a head coach.
So how would Donovan feel about coaching against Knight on a yearly basis? An Atlanta-Journal Constitution report Monday morning said that Knight would have interest in the Georgia vacancy if he was approached by the school.
“The big thing is, if he wanted to do it, it would be great for the game of college basketball,” Donovan said. “Obviously, he’s doing the ESPN stuff right now. When I was at Kentucky as an assistant we played against their teams all of the game and I had great respect for Indiana when he was there.
“Certainly, he’s a legendary coach, he’s an icon. I think as college basketball goes, there’s no question he’s a great teacher. There’s a lot of kids that have benefited from playing for him and I think that would be great if that’s what he wants to do. He loves the game of basketball, is a really good teacher and it would probably be a positive to have him in any league.”
Knight was the youngest head coach to win a national title at 35 and has coached Indiana to three national titles. Donovan won his first of his two national titles at 40, becoming the second-youngest coach behind Knight to win a national championship.
Donovan said that he and Knight have talked on occasion.
“I don’t know if I know him that well to go down the road from there,” Donovan said. “I do know him that he does love the game, enjoys watching the game. I never really talked to him about wanting to get back into the game.”