Butler Bulldogs men's basketball coach Brandon Miller is taking an unexpected medical leave of absence according to an announcement from the university on Thursday. CBS Sports' Jeff Borzello was the first to tweet the news:
Butler announces that head coach Brandon Miller is taking a leave of absence for medical reasons.— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) October 2, 2014
Miller, 35, was to enter his second year at the helm after the Bulldogs went 14-17 in their first year as a member of the Big East Conference.
WTHR13 is currently reporting that assistant coach Chris Holtmann has been appointed as the interim head coach.
EDIT: The school has issued a press release, confirming the reports:
INDIANAPOLIS, IND. -- Butler Vice President and Director of Athletics Barry Collier announced today (Thursday, Oct. 2) that men's basketball head coach Brandon Miller will be taking a break from his duties with the Bulldogs.
"Brandon Miller has requested a leave of absence for medical reasons, which the University has granted," stated Collier. "We are not in a position to further elaborate and we ask that everyone respect Brandon's privacy."
"Chris Holtmann has been appointed interim head coach," added the Butler athletic director.
Holtmann joined Miller's staff as an assistant coach last year after serving three seasons as head coach at Gardner-Webb University. In his final season at the North Carolina school, he guided the basketball program to a Division I school-record 21 victories and a berth in the CollegeInsider.com postseason tournament. He was named Big South Conference Coach of the Year and NABC District 3 Coach Of the Year.
Butler, heading into its second season in the BIG EAST, officially begins men's basketball practice on Saturday, Oct. 4. The Bulldogs will open the 2014-15 season at newly-renovated Hinkle Fieldhouse on Nov. 1 with an exhibition game against the University of Chicago, the alma mater of legendary Butler coach Paul D. "Tony" Hinkle.
EDIT 2: New details on Miller have emerged, per ESPN's college basketball insider Jeff Goodman:
Sad news of Butler’s Brandon Milller taking leave of absence. Close friends of his told me he has basically been out of contact for months.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) October 2, 2014
They also said that virtually no one saw him out in July during recruiting period. Would not be shocked if he does not return.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) October 2, 2014