Does the defection of Brad Stevens to the Boston Celtics spell the end of Butler basketball being relevant? Well, maybe, but not right away. Stevens’ replacement, Brandon Miller has the opportunity to work with all the players Stevens recruited. At least for now.
You can’t blame Stevens for taking the big money and the bright lights of the NBA. Unfortunately for Butler, it happened so late in the cycle that they couldn’t find a suitable replacement. The coaching carousel is well done for this offseason. College basketball practice begins is less than three months. Therefore Brandon Miller has to be the guy to follow the lead of Thad Matta, Brad Stevens and that guy who was great at Butler but was gawd awful at Iowa.
So who is Brandon Miller?
Miller is a former Butler point guard and assistant coach who graduated in 2003. So he’s really young. You thought Brad Stevens was young for a coach at 36? Miller is 32.
Miller returned to Butler in April as an assistant coach after five years away from his alma mater. He last worked at Butler during the 2007-08 season, helping the Bulldogs to a 30-4 record and a berth in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Brandon Miller spent last season as a special assistant for University of Illinois’ head coach John Groce. With Brandon Miller on staff, the Fighting Illini recorded a 23-13 record and captured a spot in the NCAA Tournament Third Round. Last November, Butler faced Miller and the Illini in the championship game of the Maui Invitational. The Illini won that one; quite handily.
Prior to his one season at Illinois, Brandon Miller spent six years on the staff of head coach Thad Matta, a 1990 Butler graduate, at Ohio State. He served three years as an assistant coach, two seasons as director of basketball operations and one year as video coordinator. During his tenure at Ohio State, the Buckeyes advanced to the 2007 NCAA championship game. He began his career as a video intern on Matta’s staff at Xavier in 2003-04.
A native of New Castle, Ind., Brandon Miller was a top performer on Butler teams that compiled three trips to postseason tournament play. He arrived at Butler in 1999, transferring to BU from Southwest Missouri State. He earned All-Horizon League and was named Butler’s Co-Team MVP in 2003.
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net. (“Quasi-endorsed” by Philadelphia Eagles Coach Chip Kelly) He’s also an author who contributes regularly to MSN, Fox Sports , Chicago Now, Walter Football.com and Yardbarker
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