Hall of Fame coach Bobby Knight returned to Indiana University's Assembly Hall on Saturday for the first time since he was fired as the Hoosiers' men's basketball coach in 2000.
Knight, who was present as part of the celebration for the 1980 Big Ten championship-winning Indiana team, received a hugely positive response from the crowd:
As the 79-year-old Knight made his way through the tunnel and onto the court, fans chanted his name in unison:
Knight also showed some of his trademark fire and intensity during the ceremony:
During his 29 seasons as the head coach at Indiana, Knight went 662-239 and led the Hoosiers to 11 Big Ten titles, five Final Four appearances and three national championships.
The decision to fire Knight in 2000 created a schism between the legendary coach and Indiana University, and according to the Associated Press (h/t ESPN.com), Knight turned down many opportunities to appear at events over the years.
Knight even opted against being present for his induction into the Indiana University athletic Hall of Fame in 2009.
The decision to fire Knight came shortly after video that showed him choking player Neil Reed during a 1997 practice surfaced in 2000. Knight was then hired to be the head coach at Texas Tech in 2001, and he spent seven years at the helm for the Red Raiders.
Overall, Knight went 902-371 during his college coaching career when also taking into account his time at Army prior to joining Indiana. Among Division I men's basketball coaches, Knight is third on the all-time wins list behind Duke's Mike Krzyzewski and Syracuse's Jim Boeheim.
Knight was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1991 and the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
Despite the energy that Knight's return gave the crowd Saturday, the Hoosiers fell 74-62 to the rival Purdue Boilermakers, dropping their record to 15-8 on the season.