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Bobby Knight on Death Row?  by Stan Silliman     humor sports comedy cartoons articles


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman
Bobby Knight on Death Row? 

      “Hey, Silliman,” Neighbor Lyle drops by “Here’s a deal for you. Bobby Knight’s son, Pat, is on death row in Texas and he wants someone to send him jokes so he can use them for his departing words.”

    “Get out of here,” I tell Lyle. I’m saying this not so much as I don’t believe my neighbor, but if you knew him, you wouldn’t. It’s just that I’m busy, trying to write a column and I want him out. Besides, the idea that Texas Tech assistant coach Pat Knight is on death row is ridiculous. Exactly the kind of story we’re looking for.

    Lyle hands me an internet blurb and I guess he’s right, partially. There is a guy on Texas death row named Patrick Knight – not the same Pat Knight who is Bobby Knight’s son - scheduled to be executed for a double murder on June 26th     and yes, he has put out a call for jokes and plans to select the best one as his final pre-execution statement.

If you ask us, that’s pretty crass and I don’t think we’ll be offering him any zingers. I’m not even sure what kind of audience he expects. Are guards and executioners big laughers? What if he rehearses all week and doesn’t knock them dead? What if his audience starts heckling… and he dies on stage? I would have hated to have contributed a joke that got him booed just before he got zapped. Or what if the switch thrower gets laughing so hard he accidentally flips the switch before everyone’s ready? What if the governor sends word to stay the execution and as soon as the messenger walks in … cue up 1940s Cagney movie music… the guards are laughing and while the messenger shouts “Stop the…” the guard inadvertently flips the switch.  I know… this kind of stuff kills at the Big House.
Bobby Knight on Death Row?  by Stan Silliman     humor sports comedy cartoons articles
    Not all that funny, really. Funnier concept, if you can call it that, is Bobby Knight actually being on death row. It could happen. Bobby gets to choking one of his players, gets carried away, grips a little too hard, other coaches try to pull him off and he slings them across the floor into the bleachers and then goes back to choking. Now you have dead players and dead coaches so then Bobby is distraught so he goes hunting with friends and shoots a few of them. Certainly then, Bobby will end up in Huntsville Prison, I’d think. Not so farfetched, really.

    That could be a funny scene. Enemies, former players, will be lining up for that snuffing. It’d be a media circus. Bobby Knight is a jokester and he won’t need to send out for writers. He’ll be snapping them off like free throws. He might be a little indignant about being killed and may try to bully the guards. Things like sticking his gum under the electric chair and then trying to lift up the chair and sling it across the yard. He may try to choke the guard who brings him his last meal, berate the clergy who reads him his last rites, all kinds of funny business. And then when he gets wheeled in he’ll be all quips. Things like:

    “Here’s hoping they forgot to pay their electric bill.”
    “I got my last meal from Sizzler. Could you warm this up a bit?”
    “You look just like a Puerto Rican policeman. Where is a trash can when you need one?”
    “Hey, warden, where’d you get that tie, off a dead convict?”
    “Hey, what’s he going to do, kill me?”
    “I missed you at the salad bar.”
    “Hey executioner, heard you had arthritis. Can’t flip ‘em like you used to.”
    “Couldn’t we just have Dick Cheney come in and pretend I’m a turkey?”

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