Trump-stumping Knight rallies for U.S. Senate candidate Arlett

Mr. Knight, called upon by then candidate Donald Trump as a Trump-stumper during the 2016 presidential campaign, was the star attraction Thursday night at a rally for Mr. Arlett at Millville Fire Station 84. Sussex Post/Glenn Rolfe

MILLVILLE — When “The General” speaks, people tend to listen.

Iconic college basketball coaching legend Bob Knight says President Trump is one who listens — and so does U.S. Senate candidate Rob Arlett.

“Make America great again. We all want that,” said Mr. Knight. “I think in doing that we’re looking at some people like Rob. I think Rob is one of those guys – a senator from Delaware. A guy who’s appreciative of you people. A guy who is going to be spending his time in government working for you people.”

Mr. Knight, called upon by then candidate Donald Trump as a Trump-stumper during the 2016 presidential campaign, was the star attraction Thursday night at a rally for Mr. Arlett at Millville Fire Station 84.

More than 100 people attended the rally that lasted well over an hour. Mr. Knight prefaced his rallying cry by saying he doesn’t “give a damn” about Democrats, nor does he “give a damn” about Republicans. “It’s here, and people like you, that is the heart and soul of this country,” said Mr. Knight.

A Republican from Frankford, Mr. Arlett hopes to climb the political ladder from Sussex County councilman to U.S. Senate. He’s seeking the seat currently held by Sen. Thomas Carper, a Democrat who is seeking his fourth six-year term.

“We are at a crossroads in this great state, in this great country,” Mr. Arlett said. “I believe that our great state of Delaware is in great need of great change. I do. So, we are moving forward. We want to, and we are going to be putting the First State first. Because I have to tell you, we have some people in office today that do not do that and have forgotten about you. They care about their party politics. They care about their donors.”

“We need people of conviction and pride and patriotism of our country,” Mr. Arlett added. “We chose to get involved to make a difference because of our love for our country, and our love for our Lord, truth be told. And, our love for our people.”

“We hope a guy like him will take the spot in America to help us, because he’s not a Democrat and he’s not a Republican,” said Mr. Knight. “Above all else, he’s an American. And that’s what I think we need. Right here sits a man who just told you what he said. He’s smart. He’s tough. He works his ass off. You need him. We need him.”

“We’ve talked about Mr. Arlett and what he’s been, and why he brings to the table the real reason why he should be a selectee of the Delaware Senate,” said Mr. Knight. “And if there is a question that you would like to ask about how you feel about some aspect of your great country, of your great state, if you have a question, ask it, and I’ll bet you he has something to say to your questions. And he for damn sure will listen to your questions.”

“There are a lot of politicians that think they are too smart to listen to ordinary people,” said Mr. Knight, who after a flight cancellation flew into BWI Airport from Lubbock, Texas Thursday afternoon.

Mr. Knight, 77, coached at Army, Indiana and Texas Tech. He won 902 NCAA Division I men’s college basketball games, the most all-time at the time of his retirement in 2008. That total has since been surpassed by Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski and Jim Boeheim of Syracuse.

Mr. Knight’s fiery, competitive and sometimes combative personality, coupled perhaps with his collection with Army, earned him the nickname “The General.”

At Indiana where he coached from 1971 to 2000, Mr. Knight’s Hoosier teams won three NCAA championships and one National Invitational Tournament title. After coaching, he worked as a commentator for ESPN.

Mr. Knight did not dwell much on his coaching days, but he did boastfully share highlights while he was at Army, his first collegiate coaching job.

“When I was coaching at West Point, we beat Navy’s ass every time we played them,” said Mr. Knight.

He continues to stump for President Trump.

“The guy has got a great sense of humor. He’s got great intellect. And I’m telling you, there isn’t one of you in this group that he does not care about,” said Mr. Knight, adding he goes to bed “knowing that our President is a hell of a golfer but only plays once in a while.

“And if he was just ready to win the hole on the last stroke, and something came up, he would turn to one of his aides and he’d say, ‘Get that gas going in that car. Let’s go take care of this.’ He wouldn’t wait to see whether he won the golf game or not.”

“We have a vision to do the same here in Delaware,” said Mr. Arlett. “And that is truly why we are here today, is it not? Because all of you care about your country. All of you care about Delaware.

“And we are truly honored to have the ‘Coach’ come here. He is here strictly for us, strictly for you. He flew all the way out here for this event and he’s going to do an event down in Ocean City tomorrow (Friday) evening for a local candidate.”

“And I love the fact that he doesn’t care about the Democrats or the Republicans,” said Mr. Arlett. “What I have learned about ‘Coach’ is that he loves this country. Do you all get that? He loves this country.”

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