By Griffin Hill
A few weeks ago I had a the pleasure of talking with former Michigan and Ohio State guard Andrew Dakich.
We discussed his transition from Ann Arbor to Columbus and his time at Ohio State, as well as his upcoming participation in the The Basketball Tournament in late July.
Dakich had a four year career at Michigan before he came to Ohio State as a graduate transfer. Obviously this is an extremely unique case. Moving from Michigan to Ohio State sounds crazy, yet Dakich managed to make this move smoother than butter.
He stressed that in this process of transferring he consulted several different people. When asked about this subject, he first said “Obviously my dad,” who seems to be an extremely strong influence in his life. But I found what he mentioned next to be especially interesting:
“I got lots of opinions from former transfers, and felt confident because coach Beilein was on board with the idea. Also my roommate at Quinnipiac pushed me to make the move. It all fell together great.”
The support Dakich received from his friends, coaches, and other players shows the trust people have in him as a player and, more notably, a person.
I know Buckeye fans feel cheated that they only got to experience one year of his abilities; however, this isn’t the case!
Andrew Dakich will be returning to Ohio State as a graduate assistant to help the team next season. I asked him how this came about about and he answered:
“It was a team effort, I even got help from the academic staff. It was obviously a no brainer once we started talking about it.”
Since Dakich will be with the Buckeyes next season, I asked him about the upcoming 2018-2019 season as well:
“The offensive leader will be CJ Jackson. He will have even more on his shoulders, and needs to be vocal. Coach will make sure these guys hold each other accountable. It’ll sure be fun to be a part of, especially with all the new talent coming in. These freshmen are fighting hard. It’s a winning culture.”
So, we will be lucky enough to have Andrew Dakich in Columbus another year as a coach, but I know those fans want to see him play!
Well, Andrew was excited to tell me he will be competing on a team, which he constructed, in the 2018 The Basketball Tournament for 2 million dollars. (The Midwest portion of this tournament all starts on July 21.)
Dakich’s team, who is the 4th seed in the Midwest region, will go by the name “BIG X.”
The team includes players such as former Clemson point guard, Gabe DeVoe, and Dakich’s college teammates: Jae’Sean Tate (Pending NBA Status) and Kam Williams.
When I asked him about the tournament, he responded accordingly:
“I have always been a fan, I’ve watched it, so I talked to the staff and started to get a team together.”
He seemed confident with his teams chances at advancing to the later rounds and noted that his only worry was that they were straight out of college.
I gave them all 2 million reasons to be in it. It should be fun, and we will be ready to go.
From seeing minimal minutes as a Wolverine to being a must needed piece in a more than impressive season for the Buckeyes, Dakich could have crumbled under the pressure.
Long story short, he didn’t. Instead, he proved to be a reliable scorer, and more importantly, a defensive animal.
His interesting story and unique Big Ten career is admirable. Andrew Dakich is a leader, a hard worker, and a good person. All qualities any college basketball player should seek to obtain. I wish the best of luck to Andrew in the The Basketball Tournament later this month and in his potential coaching career going forward.