Bob Knight isn’t entitled to collect insurance to recoup money he paid to settle a lawsuit stemming from his 1999 confrontation with a former assistant at Indiana University, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled on Wednesday, Aug. 8th.
Knight argued the Indiana Insurance Co. wrongly denied him liability coverage for the suit, which was filed by Ron Felling over his firing by Knight.
Knight, now the coach at Texas Tech, settled with Felling in 2002 by paying him $25,000 and admitting that he had shoved Felling in anger after he overheard a telephone conversation in which Felling criticized Knight’s coaching and behavior.
Knight argued that he was covered under a homeowners policy and the insurer breached its duty to investigate the incident and defend him from Felling’s lawsuit.
Marion Superior Court Judge David Dreyer of Marion Superior Court ruled last year that Knight’s insurance policy excluded coverage for bodily harm that is “expected or intended.”
The Court of Appeals upheld the ruling, saying the policy didn’t cover the incident because it was in a workplace and there was no bodily injury. “A reasonable claims manager would be able to discern the lack of contractual obligation at that juncture,” the court said.
Knight was fired by Indiana in 2000. He lost an earlier suit against the university for wrongful firing and later dropped an appeal.
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