Miller never beat rival Purdue, going 0-7. The Boilermakers have now matched their second-longest winning streak in series history at nine. Those numbers put Miller in historically bad territory and were of great concern to Dolson, fans and alumni.

Dolson said he made his recommendation to school president Michael McRobbie over the weekend. McRobbie accepted the recommendation and then gave Dolson permission to find private money to cover the costs. Two meetings later, he also had the money to make it a more palatable decision amid a COVID-19 pandemic that has led to millions in lost revenue, reduced paychecks for coaches and administrators, and department-wide furloughs.

By making the decision before April 2022, Indiana was on the hook for the $10.3 million. If Dolson had waited another year, the cost would have dropped to $3.5 million.

“Prior to my conclusion, I had zero conversations with any donors as far as where we are as a program,” he said. “I didn’t take their temperature at all. I felt I had to do all of my due diligence first. Of course you hear things out there, but that had absolutely zero to do with my decision.”

Miller successfully recruited some of the state’s best talent, including three straight Indiana Mr. Basketball Award winners — Romeo Langford, Trayce Jackson-Davis and Anthony Leal.

But their arrivals didn’t correlate into consistent success.