Former Duke AD Tom Butters, who hired Coach K, dies at 77
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) Former Duke athletic director Tom Butters has died.
Duke spokesman Art Chase said Friday the family told him Butters died Thursday night at age 77. The cause of death was not announced.
Butters was best known for hiring Mike Krzyzewski to coach the Blue Devils' men's basketball team in 1980. Butters stuck with Krzyzewski after consecutive 17-loss seasons and he went on to lead Duke to five national championships and set the Division I men's record with 1,040 victories.
Krzyzewski says that ''outside of my mom, no one believed in me more than Tom.''
Butters pitched for the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1962-65, coached Duke's baseball team from 1968-70, served as the school's AD for 20 years and founded the university's Iron Dukes fundraising organization.