After an incredible run in 2000, Butler was back in 2001 with another blockbuster season which saw them finish 11-3 overall, falling just one game short of playing for the D-II State Championship. The Aviators dream season came to an end with just over a minute left in the 4th quarter of the State Semi-Final at Welcome Stadium.
Coming into the season there were a lot of questions. The Aviators had lost a load due to graduation and had a number of new faces stepping. Front and center was junior quarterback Tyler Koch in for Josh Betts who had moved on to Miami University. At running back seniors Andrew Doss and Brandon Godsey were being asked to step up in place of Zac Molnar who was yet another casualty of graduation. Similar situations existed throughout the Butler roster, but in spite of it all coach Steve Pelfrey felt very confident about this group.
"We're happy with our kids and we expect big things from them," said Pelfrey. "We have a lot of options. We had a good offseason and we have good numbers."
The group delivered on those lofty expectations. After yet another gut wrenching loss to Piqua in the regular season, the Aviators exorcised the demons in a Week 12, 30-0 thrashing of Piqua at Troy Memorial Stadium. Butler held the powerful Indians to just 29 yards of total offense and allowed only two first downs. Not only did the win break a losing streak to the Indians that went back decades, it propelled the Aviators to the deepest playoff run in school history.
In another special moment, Butler's 35-15 blowout win over Troy was highlighted by Brandon Godsey's record breaking performance in which he rushed for 294 yards on 20 carries, breaking the single game record of 288 set by Denny Detrick in the 1950's.