Skip to content

Butler’s step up to the big time signified by charter flights?

Jan 23, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT

butler big blue

Welp, I think we can officially say that Butler has made it as a high-major, nationally relevant program.

And it’s not because they hosted College Gameday on Saturday or have managed to climb into the top ten while missing their leading scorer. It’s not because they made the jump to the Atlantic 10 and are considering making the leap to the new league formed by the Big East’s Catholic 7. It isn’t even because the Bulldogs made back-to-back national title games and have the best, young head coach in the business running the show.

It has nothing to do with their success.

And everything to do with … their travel? According to David Woods, the Butler beat-writer for the Indy Star, the Bulldogs no longer take busses to every game. They fly, sometimes commercial but usually charter flights. They’ll be flying charter to La Salle for Wednesday’s game and will be taking a charter to every Atlantic 10 road game for the rest of the season.

That comes at a cost:

Depending on the destination and length of flights, charters can run from $20,000 to nearly $40,000. Butler schedules charters through Anthony Travel, the same company used by Indiana, Purdue, Notre Dame and about 30 other Division I schools. Tim Lindgren of Anthony Travel said the company acts as a liaison with travel brokers.

Butler once called on donors to help with fundraising so the team could fly by charter, but now the cost is budgeted. Butler coach Brad Stevens said the university recognized travel expense would increase when Butler left the Horizon League to join the Atlantic 10.

Stevens said the charters are “part of investing and doing it the right way.”

By “investing and doing it the right way”, Stevens is saying that this is how the Bulldogs go from being a blip on the radar to having longevity as a contender, something that can be sustained even if Stevens decides to leave for another job.

There’s a convenience level at work here as well.

Butler’s playing a more national schedule. The Atlantic 10 is much more spread out than the Horizon League. Longer trips mean more potential travel pitfalls. Flying coach means a flight could be delayed. Taking a bus means that the team may not make it back from a game until 4 a.m.

Chartering a flight not only allows the Bulldogs to schedule their travel around practices and classes, but it means that players will have that much more time to study, work out and sleep.

Being able to afford those luxuries makes you one of the big boys.

Butler won when there wasn’t a level playing field. Now they spend like a high-major.

So watch out.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

Latest Posts
  1. DePaul forward DeJuan Marrero to transfer to Chipola College

    Jul 21, 2014, 11:43 PM EDT

    marrero

    DePaul redshirt freshman forward DeJuan Marrero will play his sophomore season at Chipola.

  2. Malik Newman, Ivan Rabb, Jayson Tatum, Malik Monk among 33 members battling for USA U17 roster spots this week

    Jul 21, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT

    Malik Newman (Getty Images) Getty Images

    The USA U17 tryouts have a lot of big names and it will also be important for the last week of the July live evaluation period.

  3. Peach Jam mixtape for five-star 2015 guard Isaiah Briscoe (VIDEO)

    Jul 21, 2014, 9:00 PM EDT

    (Scott Phillips/NBCSports.com) (Scott Phillips/NBCSports.com)

    Isaiah Briscoe helped lead the New Jersey Playaz to a title at Peach Jam.

  4. Four-star Class of 2016 guard Bruce Brown gave up football to focus on basketball

    Jul 21, 2014, 7:45 PM EDT

    (Scott Phillips/NBCSports.com) (Scott Phillips/NBCSports.com)

    Bruce Brown was a promising two-sport athlete, but gave up football to focus on basketball.

  5. Four-star recruit Cameron Walker commits to Stanford

    Jul 21, 2014, 6:10 PM EDT

    adidas adidas

    Walker is the second commitment for the Cardinal this spring.

  6. Seven (more) Takeaways from Nike’s Peach Jam

    Jul 21, 2014, 4:45 PM EDT

    NikeEYB NikeEYB

    Seven additional thoughts on Nike’s Peach Jam, including Ben Simmons’ one weakness, Malik Monk and how college coaches look at parents

  7. Peach Jam mixtape of top 2016 recruit Jayson Tatum (VIDEO)

    Jul 21, 2014, 2:54 PM EDT

    Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 2.45.41 PM

    Tatum is the best player in the class.

  8. Indiana’s summer workouts look intense (VIDEO)

    Jul 21, 2014, 12:28 PM EDT

    Tom Crean AP

    The Hoosiers will be in shape come September, that’s for sure.

  9. CBT Quotables Part IV: The Lawsons, Stephen Zimmerman, Malik Monk

    Jul 21, 2014, 11:26 AM EDT

    NikeEYB NikeEYB

    The latest in our series of anonymous quotes from coaches on the players they recruit.

  10. Kansas’ Landen Lucas hopes summer work results in more playing time

    Jul 20, 2014, 11:00 PM EDT

    Aaron Ross, Landen Lucas Aaron Ross, Landen Lucas

    After playing sparingly last season, Lucas is hoping to take a significant step forward in 2014-15.

  11. Name aside, Gary Payton II will be an important player for Oregon State

    Jul 20, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT

    JucoRecruiting.com JucoRecruiting.com

    Fans may look to compare Gary Payton II to his father, something both hope to avoid this season, but his role as point guard is an important one.

  12. Reports: Former Clemson forward Ibrahim Djambo transferring to Hofstra

    Jul 20, 2014, 7:46 PM EDT

    Jeff Laidig, Ibrahim Djambo AP

    Djambo’s playing time was unlikely to increase had he remained at Clemson, where he played 9.2 minutes per game last season.

  13. Report: 2015 shooting guard Matt McQuaid de-commits from SMU

    Jul 20, 2014, 6:46 PM EDT

    Larry Brown AP

    McQuaid’s de-commitment leaves SMU with one verbal pledge in its 2015 recruiting class.

  14. Report: 2015 phenom Ben Simmons fully committed to attending LSU

    Jul 20, 2014, 5:39 PM EDT

    Ben Simmons (Kelly Kline/Under Armour) Ben Simmons (Kelly Kline/Under Armour)

    Apparently there were some questions at the Peach Jam regarding the possibility of Simmons returning to Australia in 2015 to play professionally instead of attending LSU.

  15. Stanford guard Anthony Brown looks to take another step forward in 2014-15

    Jul 20, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

    Chasson Randle, Anthony Brown AP

    Brown won Pac-12 Most Improved Player honors last season, helping lead the Cardinal to the Sweet 16.

  16. Former Stony Brook guard Ahmad Walker transfers to Barton Community College

    Jul 20, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Stony Brook Stony Brook

    The 6-foot-4 Walker played just one season at Stony Brook.

  17. Four-star power forward Ray Spalding commits to Louisville

    Jul 20, 2014, 2:36 PM EDT

    AP AP

    It’s the second commit for Rick Pitino this week.