Butler Bulldogs men's basketball

The Butler Bulldogs men's basketball team represents Butler University in Indianapolis, United States. The school's team currently competes in the Big East Conference. Their current head coach is LaVall Jordan and they play their home games at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Butler Bulldogs
2019–20 Butler Bulldogs men's basketball team
UniversityButler University
All-time record1,560–1,114 (.583)
Head coachLaVall Jordan (3rd season)
ConferenceBig East
LocationIndianapolis, Indiana
ArenaHinkle Fieldhouse
(Capacity: 9,100)
Student sectionDawg Pound
ColorsBlue and White[1]
NCAA Tournament Runner-up
2010, 2011
NCAA Tournament Final Four
2010, 2011
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
2010, 2011
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1962, 2003, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2017
NCAA Tournament Round of 32
2001, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
NCAA Tournament Appearances
1962, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Conference Tournament Champions
1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2008, 2010, 2011
Conference Regular Season Champions
1933, 1934, 1947, 1952, 1953, 1959, 1961, 1962, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

Competitive standing

Despite having played in a mid-major conference, Butler rose to national prominence in the 1990s. They ranked in most media polls for all but a few weeks from the 2006–07 season to the 2011–12 season, and competed in the postseason every year since 1997, except for 2004, 2005, and 2014. In the 2010 NCAA Tournament, Butler was the National runner-up to Duke, advancing to the National Championship Game after defeating Michigan State in the Final Four.[2] With a total enrollment of only 4,500 students, Butler is the smallest school to play for a national championship since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.[3] The Bulldogs also went to the championship game in the following NCAA Tournament, falling to UConn after defeating VCU in the Final Four. With the victory over VCU, Butler became the first mid-major program to reach the championship game in successive seasons since 1979, when seeding of the tournament began, and the only team from the state of Indiana to reach back-to-back championship games.[2]

After spending one season in the Atlantic 10 Conference, Butler moved into the realigned basketball-only Big East Conference for the 2013–14 season. Their first season was mediocre, finishing 9th out of 10 teams with a 14–17 record, their first losing record since 2004–05. In their second season, despite being picked to finish 7th, the Bulldogs surprised many by finishing tied for second place in the conference. Butler finished the 2015–16 season in a tie for fourth place in Big East play with a record of 21–11, 10–8 in conference and receiving a bid to the NCAA Tournament where they advanced to the Second Round.

Basketball community

Because of the school's history of basketball success, location in the heart of the land of "Hoosier Hysteria", and lack of a scholarship football program, the Butler University fan base is primarily basketball oriented. Other athletics enjoy substantial followings of current students and alumni, but only basketball has garnered interest from a national audience.

Two studies estimated that television, print, and online news coverage of Butler's 2010 and 2011 appearances in the NCAA tournament championship game resulted in additional publicity for the university worth about $1.2 billion. In an example of the "Flutie effect", applications rose by 41% after the 2010 appearance.[4] In June 2011, USA Today ranked Butler as one of the top five colleges making use of social media.[5] Specific to basketball, Butler's mascot, Butler Blue,[6][7] the men's basketball program,[8] head coach LaVall Jordan,[9] and other coaches have university-endorsed Twitter accounts. Also, online communities Butler Hoops[10] and /r/ButlerUniversity[11] exist to facilitate discussion among fans. In 2013, a student-run podcast, called the "Front Row Hoopcast,[12]" was started to give commentary and insight to Butler Basketball from the student perspective.

In recent years, the Butler program has also received national attention for its philosophy to the game, which it calls "The Butler Way". At its core, The Butler Way calls for complete commitment and exalts teamwork above self.[13]


NCAA Tournament results

The Bulldogs have appeared in 16 NCAA Tournaments. Their combined record is 24–16.[14]

Year Seed Round Opponent Result
1962First Round
Sweet Sixteen
Regional Third Place Game
Bowling Green
Western Kentucky
W 56–55
L 60–81
W 87–86
1997No. 14First RoundNo. 3 CincinnatiL 69–86
1998No. 13First RoundNo. 4 New MexicoL 62–79
2000No. 12First RoundNo. 5 FloridaL 68–69 OT
2001No. 10First Round
Second Round
No. 7 Wake Forest
No. 2 Arizona
W 79–63
L 52–73
2003No. 12First Round
Second Round
Sweet Sixteen
No. 5 Mississippi State
No. 4 Louisville
No. 1 Oklahoma
W 47–46
W 79–71
L 54–65
2007No. 5First Round
Second Round
Sweet Sixteen
No. 12 Old Dominion
No. 4 Maryland
No. 1 Florida
W 57–46
W 62–59
L 57–65
2008No. 7First Round
Second Round
No. 10 South Alabama
No. 2 Tennessee
W 81–61
L 71–76 OT
2009No. 9First RoundNo. 8 LSUL 71–75
2010No. 5First Round
Second Round
Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Final Four
National Championship Game
No. 12 UTEP
No. 13 Murray State
No. 1 Syracuse
No. 2 Kansas State
No. 5 Michigan State
No. 1 Duke
W 77–59
W 54–52
W 63–59
W 63–56
W 52–50
L 59–61
2011No. 8Second Round
Third Round
Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Final Four
National Championship Game
No. 9 Old Dominion
No. 1 Pittsburgh
No. 4 Wisconsin
No. 2 Florida
No. 11 VCU
No. 3 Connecticut
W 60–58
W 71–70
W 61–54
W 74–71 OT
W 70–62
L 41–53
2013No. 6Second Round
Third Round
No. 11 Bucknell
No. 3 Marquette
W 56–68
L 72–74
2015No. 6Second Round
Third Round
No. 11 Texas
No. 3 Notre Dame
W 56–48
L 64–67 OT
2016No. 9First Round
Second Round
No. 8 Texas Tech
No. 1 Virginia
W 71–61
L 69–77
2017No. 4First Round
Second Round
Sweet Sixteen
No. 13 Winthrop
No. 12 Middle Tennessee
No. 1 North Carolina
W 76–64
W 74–65
L 80–92
2018No. 10First Round
Second Round
No. 7 Arkansas
No. 2 Purdue
W 79–62
L 73–76

*Following the introduction of the "First Four" round in 2011, the Round of 64 and Round of 32 were referred to as the Second Round and Third Round, respectively, from 2011 to 2015. Then from 2016 moving forward, the Round 64 and Round of 32 will be called the First and Second rounds, as they were prior to 2011.

NIT results

The Bulldogs have appeared in nine National Invitation Tournaments. Their combined record is 5–9.[15]

Year Seed Round Opponent Result
1958N/AFirst RoundSt. John'sL 69–76
1959N/AFirst Round
W 94–80
L 77–83
1985N/AFirst RoundIndianaL 57–79
1991N/AFirst RoundWyomingL 61–63
1992N/AFirst RoundPurdueL 56–82
1999N/AFirst Round
Second Round
Old Dominion
W 51–50
W 75–68
L 69–89
2002N/AFirst Round
Second Round
Bowling Green
W 81–69
L 65–66
2006#8Opening Round
First Round
Miami (OH)
Florida State
W 53–52
L 63–67
2019#5First RoundNebraskaL 76–80

CBI results

The Bulldogs have appeared in one College Basketball Invitational. Their record is 2–1.

Year Round Opponent Result
2012First Round
W 75–58
W 63–53
L 62–68 OT

Bulldogs in the NBA

NBA & ABA players who attended Butler University[16]

Coaching history

Coach Years Win–Loss Win % Conference titles NCAA Tourn.
Harlan Page1920–192698–36.7310
Tony Hinkle1926–1942,1945–1970560–392.58801
Frank Hedden1942–194518–15.5450
George Theofanis1970–197779–105.4290
Joe Sexson1977–1989143–188.4320
Barry Collier1989–2000196–132.59803
Thad Matta2000–200124–8.75001
Todd Lickliter2001–2007131–61.68202
Brad Stevens2007–2013166–49.77245
Brandon Miller2013–201414–17.4520
Chris Holtmann2014–201770–31.69303
LaVall Jordan2017–present37–30.55201


Information on the awards comes from the 2009–2010 media guide.[18]


Record vs. Big East opponents


All-time leading scorers

1Chad Tucker1983–19882,321
2Kelan Martin2014–20182,047
3Darrin Fitzgerald1983–19872,019
4Kellen Dunham2012–20161,946
5Matt Howard2007–20111,939
6A. J. Graves2004–20081,807
7Lynn Mitchem1979–19831,798
8Darin Archbold1988–19921,744
9Billy Shepherd1969–19721,733
10Kamar Baldwin2016–present1,630
11Jermaine Guice1990–19941,607
12Darren Fowlkes1985–19891,543
13Roosevelt Jones2011–2013, 2014–20161,533
14Wayne Burris1973–19771,531
15Shelvin Mack2008–20111,527
16Jon Neuhouser1994–19981,485
17Bobby Plump1954–19581,439
18Keith Greve1951–1954, 1957–19581,400
19Jeff Blue1961–19641,392
20Rylan Hainje1998–20021,388
21Khyle Marshall2010–20141,373

Sources of information[20][21][19]

Tournament titles

1923–24AAU National TournamentW vs. Schooley-Woodstock 34–29
W vs. Hillyards 35–29
W vs. Kansas St. Teachers 40–21
W vs. K. C. Athletic Club 30–26
1947–48Hoosier ClassicW vs. Purdue 52–50
W vs. Indiana 64–51
1948–49Hoosier ClassicW vs. Indiana 64–55
W vs. Purdue 47–43
1960–61Hoosier ClassicW vs. Illinois 70–68
W vs. Purdue 65–63
1996–97MCC TournamentW vs. Milwaukee 48–36
W vs. Green Bay 57–52OT
W vs. UIC 69–68
1997–98MCC TournamentW vs. Loyola 62–53
W vs. Wright State 67–48
W vs. Green Bay 70–51
1999–00MCC TournamentW vs. Loyola 61–57
W vs. Milwaukee 65–51
W vs. Detroit 62–43
2000–01MCC TournamentW vs. Loyola 78–52
W vs. Wright State 66–58
W vs. Detroit 53–38
2001–02Top of the World ClassicW vs. Radford 73–56
W vs. Delaware 76–59
W vs. Washington 67–64
2001–02Hoosier ClassicW vs. Samford 45–37
W vs. Indiana 66–64
2006–07NIT Tip-OffW vs. Notre Dame 71–69
W vs. Indiana 60–55
W vs. Tennessee 56–44
W vs. Gonzaga 79–71
2007–08Great Alaska ShootoutW vs. Michigan 79–65
W vs. Virginia Tech 84–78
W vs. Texas Tech 81–71
2007–08Horizon League TournamentW vs. Illinois-Chicago 66–50
W vs. Cleveland State 70–55
2009–10Horizon League TournamentW vs. Milwaukee 68–59
W vs. Wright State 70–45
2010–11Diamond Head ClassicW vs. Utah 74–62
W vs. Florida State 67–64
W vs. Washington State 84–68
2010–11Horizon League TournamentW vs. Cleveland State 76–68
W vs. Milwaukee 59–44
2016–17Continental Tire Las Vegas InvitationalW vs. Vanderbilt 76–66
W vs. Arizona 69–65


  1. "Butler Bulldogs Official Style Guide" (PDF). November 6, 2016. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
  2. "NCAA Basketball Tournament History: Butler Bulldogs – ESPN". Espn.go.com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  3. Neville, Susan S.,Butler's Big Dance. Indiana University Press, 2010
  4. Dosh, Kristi (March 2012). "Tournament pays handsomely for schools". ESPN. Retrieved March 30, 2012.
  5. Archived June 28, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  6. "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  7. "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  8. "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  9. "Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2014-03-31.
  10. "butlerhoops.com". butlerhoops.com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  11. "Butler's Reddit Community". reddit.com. 2012-12-02. Retrieved 2014-06-02.
  12. "Front Row Hoopcast". frontrowhoopcast.com. 2014-01-03. Archived from the original on 2014-06-05. Retrieved 2014-06-02.
  13. Woods, David (2007-02-15). "'Butler Way' includes sense of urgency". Usatoday.Com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  14. "Butler". College Basketball at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved 2016-03-31.
  15. "2008–2009 Media Guide: History and Records Section" (PDF). Grfx.cstv.com.
  16. "NBA & ABA Players Who Attended Butler University". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  17. http://www.app.com/article/A4/20110412/SPORTS/104120354/Still-living-hoop-dream
  18. "2009–10 Butler Men's Basketball Media Guide – Butler". Butlersports.com. Archived from the original on 2014-03-19. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  19. "2016_17_MBB_Media_Guide_Complete.pdf – Butler Bulldogs" (PDF). butlersports.com. Retrieved 2017-06-13.
  20. "BUTLER OFFICIAL ATHLETIC SITE – Men's Basketball". Butlersports.cstv.com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
  21. "Butler University – The Official Athletics Site". Butlersports.cstv.com. Retrieved 2014-03-19.
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