EVANSTON, Ill. — Indiana Coach Bob Knight walked on to the court at Northwestern's Welch-Ryan Arena Saturday with a bag of candy for a section of students whose chants of "Who's Your Daddy?" last year so enraged Knight it led to an angry confrontation with Wildcat Coach Kevin O'Neill.
The students, who had been booing Knight, started laughing as he tossed red-and-white peppermints to them.
"I just had a lot of candy. I wanted to share it," Knight said with a straight face after the game that his No. 11-ranked Hoosiers won, 89-67. "I couldn't eat it, I'm on a diet. In the locker room, I said to myself, 'How could I get rid of all this candy? Oh! I know how I can get rid of it.' "
Indiana, 17-3 overall and 7-2 in the Big Ten, quickly disposed of Northwestern (4-17, 0-9) by jumping out to a 23-4 lead. The Hoosiers never led by less than 17 points the rest of the game and shot 62% in defeating the Wildcats for the 22nd consecutive time.
Last February at Welch-Ryan, with Northwestern ahead of Indiana, a group of students referred to as the Rowdies started chanting "Who's Your Daddy?" at the Hoosier bench. After Indiana won in overtime, Knight pointed to the scoreboard and repeated the same chant to the students.
Moments later, he angrily confronted O'Neill at midcourt, lecturing O'Neill about the crowd. O'Neill took offense, grabbing Knight's trademark red sweater and the two got in a shoving match.
Saturday, Knight playfully put his hands around O'Neill's neck when the two met after the game. Knight was also unfazed by the antics of some of the Northwestern fans.
One student carried a sign that read, "Bobby, the DNA results are in: I'm your Daddy."
Some of the Rowdies donned camouflage or bright orange vests, a reference to Knight's much-publicized hunting trip this summer in which he accidentally shot a friend. One student had "Not a Deer" painted on his chest in red letters, with an arrow pointing to another student, who had a red-and-white bull's-eye on his stomach.