Texas Tech Head Basketball Coach Bob Knight has brought more than just recognition to the university. In the past four years, Knight has helped raise thousands for the Texas Tech University Library. He recently posed for the cameras to promote his fund and encourage donations. NewsChannel 11's Suleika Acosta spoke with Coach Knight about his passion for books.
He's a legendary college basketball coach but off the court, Coach Knight is passionate about another cause. "I've always felt that of all the educational disciplines there are, the absolute most important is reading," says Knight.
It began with Coach Knight donating $25,000 to the Texas Tech Library. Now, four years later, he has helped raise $175,000. "The library was my choice because, what serves the university community better than the library? Nothing does," he says.
For Knight it's a passion that began early on. "Well, my mom was a school teacher and I probably had a library card when I was 5 or 6-years-old and I think reading has been my favorite past time even as a youngster of that age," says Coach Knight.
At every university where he has coached, Knight has highlighted the importance of donating to university libraries and Tech is no exception.
"What he's done for the libraries is priceless because he raises visibility and gives people an awareness of the need for giving to libraries and the benefits it could have," says Jane Piercy, development officer for the library. She says money raised has brought a digital media studio to campus.
Digital Media Librarian Myra Brown says the lab gives students and faculty access to cameras, computers and editing equipment. "We're so grateful to Coach Knight for his generosity that we can provide this kind of service," says Brown.
It's cutting edge technology that prepares students for what's ahead. That's a game plan Coach Knight encourages everyone to be a part of. "There isn't a single facility in the university that more serves or better serves the entire university community than the library. So a donation to the library is really a donation to the entire student body," adds Coach Knight.
Knight has also donated hundreds of books from his personal library to Texas Tech.