Butler hires Miller to replace outgoing Stevens

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But the Bulldogs couldn’t afford a protracted search for Stevens’ successor.

Recruiting kicks into high gear next week, and the Bulldogs are scheduled to make an overseas trip to Australia in early August.

“I think bringing in somebody who’s been here and been part of that success and been able to experience it is really going to make the transition easier,” junior guard Alex Barlow said.

Miller knows the Bulldogs’ background as well as anybody.

A native of New Castle, Ind. _ the same hometown as UCLA coach Steve Alford _ Miller started his college career at Southwest Missouri State. He transferred to Butler in 1999 and became one of the most prolific 3-point shooters in school history.

“I look at the university and the basketball program and the first thing I think about is the Butler Way,” Miller said. “This university is a value-based place and that will not change. This is a very, very special place.”

He finished his career with 1,121 points, 189 3-pointers and 305 assists, earning all-league honors and all-league defensive honors. As a senior in 2003, he was the co-MVP of the Bulldogs team that beat Louisville in the NCAA tourney and reached the regional semifinals for the first time in four decades.

Following his college career, Miller joined Matta’s staff at Ohio State. Miller took a year off from coaching in 2011-12 season, returning last season as a special assistant for Groce at Illinois.

Stevens then rehired Miller in April after his top assistant, Matthew Graves, accepted the head coaching job at South Alabama.

“When I think of a basketball coach, that’s what I hope to be,” Miller said of Stevens.

Miller plans to hold a team meeting Sunday before getting back on the court for practices and preparation.

“I think my coaching style and the way I’m going to coach isn’t going to change what’s been important in the past,” Miller said. “The most important thing is getting the right people on the bus.”

Miller admitted that he and Stevens share similar philosophies and ways of coaching. Even off the court, the two appear very similar _ family by their side, constantly using words like “humbled” and “blessed” to describe being at Butler.

But Miller made it clear that he would not simply be continuing the work Stevens left behind.

“I’m not Brad Stevens. I’m Brandon Miller,” Miller said. “I will tweak and adjust in my own way, be my own person. I’ll be Brandon Miller and coach accordingly.”

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