Bob Knight was born in Madison, Wisconsin, on August 12, 1953, to Gaylord and Helen Knight. He graduated from Wisconsin Heights High School, Mazomanie, Wisconsin, in 1971 where he played football, basketball and baseball. He was selected captain and most valuable player in all three sports his senior year.
Knight continued playing football and baseball at the collegiate level at UW-Platteville, where he lettered in both sports.
Upon graduation from UW-Platteville, Knight began his coaching career at Benton High School. He organized the first ever football co-op between schools from different states in 1983: Benton High School (WI) and Scales Mound High School (IL). Knight's 18-year record as the head football coach of the Benton-Scales Mound co-op program was 96 wins and 74 losses. Knight was selected as the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association's District Coach of the Year in 1985 and 1997. Bob was also the offensive coordinator of the 2008 Wisconsin Football Coaches Association South All-Star Team.
During his 34 year career at Benton, Knight coached multiple sports: Head Girls Basketball Coach, Head Boys and Girls Track, Head Boys and Girls Golf and Junior High Girls Basketball. Bob also was Benton's athletic director for 20 years. He belonged to the following professional organizations: W ADA, WBCA, and WFCA.