Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

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Westside

April 2, 2013

Smith fond of time at Butler

Andrew Smith had about as special a college basketball career as any athlete could dream.

The Covenant Christian graduate recently wrapped up his senior year for the Butler Bulldogs, averaging 11.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.

With the Butler big man’s time completed, Smith looks back fondly at an eventful college career that started with two NCAA championship game appearances.

“When you look back, it’s about as good as it gets,” he said. “Two Final Fours and kind of an off year last year but a great year this year, when we were able to get some big time wins. It’s been wonderful and I’ve been very thankful.”

This season, Butler finished second in the Maui Invitational with wins over Marquette and North Carolina, dropped No. 1 Indiana in overtime, and beat No. 8 Gonzaga at home in a thriller.

The Bulldogs made the NCAA tournament for the third time in Smith’s four years this season. As the No. 6 seed, Butler handled No. 11 seed Bucknell 68-56 in the second round as Smith contributed 14 points and 16 rebounds.

No. 3 seed Marquette earned redemption from its buzzer-beater loss in the Maui Invitational with a 74-72 victory in the tournament’s third round. Smith had a chance to win the game as time expired but was unable to get a clean look.

“Obviously, we were very disappointed with how the game ended,” Smith said. “It’s just sad to be done really when you’re at a place for four years and you end on a game when it’s so close. It’s tough and unfortunate.”

Butler lost to LSU in the first round of the NCAA tournament the season before Smith joined the team. With the Bulldogs based around Gordon Hayward, Shelvin Mack, and Matt Howard, Smith knew there was talent on the team.

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