CLEVELAND -- Texas Tech basketball coach Bob Knight is a longtime friend of Cardinals manager Tony La Russa. In the last four years, Indians manager Eric Wedge has forged a friendship with Knight and college basketball's winningest coach sent Wedge a telegram Monday to congratulate him on winning AL Manager of the Year as voted by the Sporting News.
Knight is a huge baseball fan and at Wednesday's Big 12 preseason media day, he answered exactly one question about his basketball team -- and spent the rest of his news conference talking about baseball.
Some of Knight's thoughts:
----"Well, the Cardinals are out of it. We've got to root for the Indians. Eric Wedge is my next best friend."
---On Wedge's managing of the bullpen in Game Four: "Whatever the sport is, you get stuck with some things that are, for lack of a better word, traditional or expected. So at the end of the 8th inning, I was with two guys watching it and I said I wonder if [Rafael] Betancourt will pitch the 9th inning, which he did. Which to me was a great decision because he had just gone through three guys like a hot knife through butter. And when he pitched the 9th inning, I thought maybe they'd bring [Joe] Borowski in, because that's the thing to do. It was good. So I like that part of it."
---On the Cardinals' removal of GM Walt Jocketty: "I have never seen two guys better than Jocketty and La Russa were. They're the best I've ever seen, not just in baseball, but the best administrator and the best coach or manager that I've ever seen. I think what they did over 12 years in St. Louis was remarkable. And to split that up it was kind of interesting."
---On whether the Indians could beat the Rockies in a potential World Series: "If I knew whether the Indians could beat the Rockies or not George Bush would be asking me how the hell do you get out of Iraq right now."
(Photo: Knight holds court Wednesday/Associated Press)
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