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Pat Knight to coach at Lamar

BEAUMONT, Texas — Pat Knight is getting a fresh start at Lamar.

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The son of Hall of Famer Bob Knight was introduced as the new coach of the Cardinals on Tuesday, less than a month after he was fired by Texas Tech.

"I did get into this business, not for fame, not for fortune," Knight said. "I got in this business to start my own program, to run my own program, to build a program that people will be proud of, and I have an opportunity to do that here at Lamar."

Knight, 40, went 50-61 in three full seasons in Lubbock. Knight became a Division I head coach for the first time in February 2008, when he took over the Red Raiders midseason from his father, the winningest coach in Division I history.

The younger Knight says he's learned to embrace his pedigree and the expectations: "I coach with a ghost over me, but that makes me have a chip on my shoulder to want to prove myself."

N.C. State tabs Gottfried: Mark Gottfried promised fans that the Wolfpack will go toe-to-toe with rivals such as Duke and North Carolina under his watch as the new coach. "Every job in America has different challenges, obstacles, those things that make the job difficult," he said. "I'm not backing down from anybody here, period. We want to win." Gottfried, 47, who will receive a five-year deal with a guarantee of $1.2 million annually, has a record of 278-155 in 14 seasons at Murray State and Alabama. He resigned from Alabama in January 2009 and worked as a college basketball analyst for ESPN.

Missouri welcomes Haith: While being introduced as coach, Frank Haith, 45, welcomed the added scrutiny and heightened interest in his fortunes after seven seasons at Miami, considered a football-first school. "I spent a year at Miami and had trouble getting into my office because they didn't recognize me," he said jokingly. "I know I'm in a different place. I know they care." Haith went 129-101 in seven seasons with the Hurricanes and made the NCAA Tournament once, losing in the second round in 2008. "I don't look at the negativity I'm hearing so far as a negative," said Haith, who will earn $1.5 million annually in a five-year deal. "That's why I'm here. I want that passion."

Georgia: Junior forward Trey Thompkins entered the NBA draft and will hire an agent. Guard Travis Leslie will test his pro prospects but will not hire an agent and could return if he withdraws his name by May 8.

Illinois: Freshman forward Jereme Richmond, a former McDonald's All-American, declared for the NBA draft.

Iowa: Point guard Cully Payne is leaving the team after missing most of last season with a hernia.

Women

New Mexico: Coach Don Flanagan, 67, is retiring after 16 seasons. He went 340-168 and led the Lobos to the NCAA Tournament eight times.

Tennessee: Redshirt junior center Kelley Cain is ending her career after multiple surgeries and having to cope with pain in her hip, back and knees.

Football

Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl: The 2011 game will be played at 8 p.m. Dec. 20 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg and televised on ESPN, bowl officials said. Meanwhile, Beef 'O' Brady's extended its deal as title sponsor for the next three years for the game, now in its fourth year.

Fiesta Bowl: Bowl officials will meet April 28 in New Orleans with the NCAA subcommittee in charge of licensing bowl games. Dennis Poppe, NCAA vice president of baseball and football, told the Arizona Republic that the bowl could potentially have its four-year license revoked. The meeting is in response to a bowl report that led to the firing of its longtime president John Junker for alleged misuse of funds.

ucf beats uf in baseball: Darnell Sweeney delivered a two-out, two-run double in the ninth to lift visiting UCF (20-9) to a 4-3 victory over No. 4 Florida (24-6).

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.

Pat Knight to coach at Lamar 04/05/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 6, 2011 12:00am]
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