Pete DiPrimio, sports columnist and college beat writer for The News-Sentinel of Fort Wayne, Ind., takes his best shots on the world of Hoosier basketball.

Thursday, June 7

Is Dan Dakich Returning To IU?

Life sure has thrown Dan Dakich a few curves. It wasn’t all that long ago that the former Indiana player and assistant coach was considered one of the hot young coaches in America. He’d led Bowling Green to one Mid-American Conference title and NIT opportunity and was hired by West Virginia.

But then he changed his mind about West Virginia a few days later and returned to Bowling Green. John Beilein took the Mountaineers job, achieved NCAA tourney success and is now at Michigan.

Dakich’s Bowling Green teams struggled after his return, with losing records in four of his last five years. After going 13-18 last season and receiving a reprimand by the Mid-American Conference commissioner for a tirade over officiating, Dakich stepped down in March. His 10-year record -– 156-140.

Now, it seems, he’s poised to return to Indiana. This time it would be as director of basketball operations under coach Kelvin Sampson. Jerry Green has apparently retired after one year in that job.

What does the director of basketball operations do? Basically, it’s administrative stuff such as budget planning, scheduling and behind-the-scenes details. There’s no coaching involved, so it would be a big comedown for Dakich, but at least it’s a job in the sport he loves until he’s able to bounce back to a coaching position.

And in case you’ve forgotten, it was Dakich’s defensive effort against Michael Jordan that helped IU upset No. 1 North Carolina in the 1984 NCAA tourney.

But that was a long time ago. In this what-have-you-done-for-me-lately world, returning to your roots could be the best possible move.


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