FBI: Auerbach Death Threat Sent to Bobby Knight

The BOSTON GLOBE spent the last 18 months collecting FBI documents requested by the paper in Freedom of Information Act requests about deceased local sports stars, seemingly as a matter of course. (The deceased can’t legally or practically protest the release of records about them.) The results have been published in today’s GLOBE with interesting nuggets throughout.

J. Edgar Hoover

(Oh, J. Edgar Hoover, you rapscallion! Was there anyone you wouldn’t try to control?)

For example, there are no shortages of racist diatribes and death threats against local athletes and coaches. The most titillating involves a threat to kill Red Auerbach for his progressive views on black athletes (like allowing them) sent to Bobby Knight in 1982 with the hope that Knight would help by inviting Red to a local game so the killer could reach Auerbach more easily. The writer was never found.

Also: Marilyn Monroe fans were enraged at Joe DiMaggio after her death, Jackie Robinson was investigated for possible links to black nationalist groups, and Ty Cobb hated Communists almost as much as he hated… well, he hated everyone. If there were an inner circle of hate, he would have a seat assured.