The Bulldogs from Indiana have had a very solid history in NCAA College Basketball. Some high notes, some low. Like the loss against Florida in 2000 at the buzzer by Mike Miller.
But now we have entered a new era, the Brad Stevens regime.
He has elevated this program to an elite status only rivaled by the likes of Kentucky, Kansas, UCLA, Duke, UNLV, Florida and a small handful of others.
Going to back-to-back Final Fours is extremely difficult for any school or program and is usually done by only top national programs that recruit the best players in the country. Then they are usually kids that stay around for their senior year.
Enter Brad Stevens taking the Butler Bulldogs back to the Final Four.
Yes, last year they lost by two to Duke in the national title game. Yes, they lost their best player to the NBA. Yes, this team struggled during the middle of the season and looked like they were a one hit wonder.
But the young, Jeopardy-looking “I’ll take Hoosier History for $400 Alex", Stevens has done the seemingly impossible. Taking a mid-major school, mostly mid-level talent, and elevated them to the highest stages of college basketball.
Yes, there are many great coaches that have done amazing things during specific times. But they generally always come from the power six conferences and/or are whisked away the next season by the big boys.
Not Stevens. He has put his name in the hat with the likes of Calhoun, Coach K, Izzo, Calipari and others of our time. With LESS talent! The questions remain how long he can be this successful and where he continues his quest for championships.
But at this school, with these kids, Brad Stevens has done the greatest coaching job—in a two year timeframe—in the history of NCAA Men’s College Basketball.