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2010 NEWSMAKER: Butler's Stevens scored along with team

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Year In Review

Butler University men’s basketball coach Brad Stevens scored on several levels in 2010.

In April, Stevens, 33, coached the Bulldogs to the NCAA Final Four, where Butler lost to heavy favorite Duke University by two points in the championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Stevens quickly became a hot commodity, making the rounds on national television talk shows in the week following the Final Four, and deflecting rumors that he was a candidate to fill what seemed like every coaching vacancy at major universities.

But a week after the championship game, Butler signed Stevens to a lucrative 12-year contract extension that sports business experts valued at $1 million annually.

Stevens Stevens

The school also reaped the benefits of Stevens’—and his team’s—good fortunes. Though the private school doesn’t release sales figures, Butler officials said sales of Bulldog-themed items at campus bookstores and online were more than double during March and April what they were during the same time in 2009.

Stevens, who was in his third season as Butler’s coach last year, has been awarded two consecutive Horizon League Coach of the Year awards and became the third-youngest Division I coach to guide his team to 30 wins in a season.

In June, Stevens signed with New York-based IMG Worldwide to manage licensing, speaking, broadcasting and marketing opportunities. IMG operates in 30 countries and provides product and brand licensing, consulting and marketing services. Its clients include Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning and Roger Federer.

In October, Stevens lost one of his major supporters at Butler, when the university’s president, Bobby Fong, announced he would resign in May 2011.

Fong, 60, who became Butler’s president in 2001 and was a supporter of using the men’s basketball team as one of the school’s primary marketing tools, said he is confident the next president—along with Athletics Director Barry Collier—will continue the growth of Butler’s basketball program.•

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  1. to mention the rest of Molly's experience- she served as Communications Director for the Indianapolis Department of Public Works and also did communications for the state. She's incredibly qualified for this role and has a real love for Indianapolis and Indiana. Best of luck to her!

  2. Shall we not demand the same scrutiny for law schools, med schools, heaven forbid, business schools, etc.? How many law school grads are servers? How many business start ups fail and how many business grads get low paying jobs because there are so few high paying positions available? Why does our legislature continue to demean public schools and give taxpayer dollars to charters and private schools, ($171 million last year), rather than investing in our community schools? We are on a course of disaster regarding our public school attitudes unless we change our thinking in a short time.

  3. I agree with the other reader's comment about the chunky tomato soup. I found myself wanting a breadstick to dip into it. It tasted more like a marinara sauce; I couldn't eat it as a soup. In general, I liked the place... but doubt that I'll frequent it once the novelty wears off.

  4. The Indiana toll road used to have some of the cleanest bathrooms you could find on the road. After the lease they went downhill quickly. While not the grossest you'll see, they hover a bit below average. Am not sure if this is indicative of the entire deal or merely a portion of it. But the goals of anyone taking over the lease will always be at odds. The fewer repairs they make, the more money they earn since they have a virtual monopoly on travel from Cleveland to Chicago. So they only comply to satisfy the rules. It's hard to hand public works over to private enterprise. The incentives are misaligned. In true competition, you'd have multiple roads, each build by different companies motivated to make theirs more attractive. Working to attract customers is very different than working to maximize profit on people who have no choice but to choose your road. Of course, we all know two roads would be even more ridiculous.

  5. The State is in a perfect position. The consortium overpaid for leasing the toll road. Good for the State. The money they paid is being used across the State to upgrade roads and bridges and employ people at at time most of the country is scrambling to fund basic repairs. Good for the State. Indiana taxpayers are no longer subsidizing the toll roads to the tune of millions a year as we had for the last 20 years because the legislature did not have the guts to raise tolls. Good for the State. If the consortium fails, they either find another operator, acceptable to the State, to buy them out or the road gets turned back over to the State and we keep the Billions. Good for the State. Pat Bauer is no longer the Majority or Minority Leader of the House. Good for the State. Anyway you look at this, the State received billions of dollars for an assett the taxpayers were subsidizing, the State does not have to pay to maintain the road for 70 years. I am having trouble seeing the downside.

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