Indiana May Expand Knight Probe

Thursday, May 11th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Indiana coach Bobby Knight

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana University trustees may be expanding their investigation of coach Bob Knight to include new allegations of misconduct, including a claim he swore at and physically intimidated a 64-year-old secretary.

The trustees plan to meet behind closed doors Sunday, apparently to decide whether to include the new information in the investigation of accusations that Knight grabbed former player Neil Reed by the throat at a 1997 practice.

The Indianapolis Star, quoting sources it described as close to the investigation, reported the inquiry now includes allegations involving Knight's behavior toward secretary Jeanette Hartgraves. Also being looked at is an injury to Knight's son Tim during a hunting trip; and whether Knight was insubordinate toward his boss, athletic director Clarence Doninger.

According to the newspaper, Hartgraves, now 66 and Doninger's secretary, feared for her safety in a 1998 confrontation with Knight until her boss stepped in to calm the coach.

Hartgraves said that in February 1998 she received a call from Knight's secretary asking if the coach could speak to someone who was in a budget meeting with Doninger. When Hartgraves asked if she could tell the person what the matter concerned, Knight got on the phone and swore at her, she said.

Hartgraves said Knight then slammed down the telephone and stormed into Doninger's office waiting area. She said Knight called her other expletives and advanced toward her in anger before Doninger restrained him.

Doninger said he was present during the encounter but declined to discuss it further.

``We're not going to comment on anything related to the investigation until it is complete,'' he said.

The investigation also turned up details of another Knight tantrum against Hartgraves in the late 1980s, when Ralph Floyd was athletic director.

Then, Knight flung a potted plant against a wall, shattering the ceramic pot and a glass picture frame, Hartgraves said. She was hit by glass and debris, but was not injured.

The trustees also learned that in May 1994, Knight's son Tim, 35, suffered a dislocated shoulder and a broken nose in a scuffle with his father.

Tim Knight said there had been an argument between him and his father and he slipped on a wet floor while the two wrestled. The injury occurred during a hunting trip in Argentina.

``There was an argument between myself, my brother (Pat) and my dad that lasted no more than 30 seconds, that was an argument that turned into like a wrestling scuffle,'' Tim Knight said.

Tim Knight said he gets along well with his father and nothing like that had occurred before or since.

The trustees also are examining whether Knight intimidated Doninger when the athletics director tried to console him following a loss to Ohio State.

Doninger told The Associated Press on Wednesday that ``various things'' unrelated to Reed have been reported since Reed's charges were made public in March.

``Whether the trustees discussed those or not, I don't know. I guess I had always thought that as they went through this review there would be some discussion of other things, but I don't know that for a fact,'' Doninger said.

John Walda, the trustees' president, and Frederick Eichhorn, a trustee and former president of the Indiana State Bar Association, were appointed to investigate the accusation by Reed, who transferred from Indiana in 1997. The two also are investigating whether Knight once kicked IU president Myles Brand out of a practice and also showed players a piece of soiled toilet paper, saying that was what their practice resembled.

Walda did not return a telephone message seeking comment. Eichhorn said he would not comment until the investigation was complete.

Knight, out of town on Wednesday, denied the original accusations. Brand has said he was never told to leave practice. ———

On the Net: 7/8 trustees

Still from video showing Knight grabbing one of his players by the throat. AP Photo