Less than two weeks after having Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski speak at the third annual Don Meyer Evening of Excellence at Lipscomb, the school already has announced next year’s keynote speaker — Brad Stevens.
Stevens is the 34-year-old head men’s basketball coach at Butler University, which just played in its second straight NCAA Division I national championship game.
“Brad Stevens is one of the most successful new coaches in college basketball right now,” Lipscomb Athletic Director Philip Hutcheson said. “He has a very interesting journey into coaching and has been very successful. He is passionate about basketball and about molding his players into successful men on and off the court. We are thrilled he is coming to Lipscomb and are certain his message is one that will inspire everyone.”
Stevens is in his fourth season as Butler’s head coach and has worked at the school since 2001. He has built the private school in Indianapolis out of the Horizon League into a national title contender.
His team lost at the buzzer to Duke and Krzyzewski in 2010.
This past season, the Bulldogs took a more improbable trip to the national championship game. As an eight seed, they knocked off high-profile Pittsburgh, Wisconsin and Florida before ultimately falling to Connecticut.
Stevens will speak at Lipscomb on April 14, 2012, and tickets are already on sale at lipscombsports.com for $25 each.
On April 16, more than 3,000 showed up to hear Krzyzewski. A crowd of more than 5,000 attended in 2010 when former Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Tim Tebow spoke.
The annual athletic fundraiser began in 2009 with Don Meyer as keynote speaker. Meyer coached at Lipscomb for 24 years and just two years ago was in a car accident that led to the amputation of his left leg below his knee and to the discovery of terminal cancer. He retired from coaching last year — he spent the last 11 seasons at Northern State (S.D.) — as the all-time winningest men’s college basketball coach with 923 wins.