Within a week, Akron will lose its top assistant and recruiter to Ohio State, a source tells me.
Jeff Boals will join Thad Matta's staff with the Buckeyes, as if Ohio State needed any help recruiting big men.
Boals was the primary contact with Zeke Marshall, the No. 40 player in the nation who signed with Akron. Boals also was hot after Adreian Payne, the No. 10 player in the class of 2010. Payne has a visit to Akron scheduled for Saturday. The Buckeyes also had offered a scholarship to Payne. Akron's inside track on Payne certainly made Boals even more attractive to Matta.
Boals had been rumored to Xavier, and the rumors had some merit. Losing him to Ohio State is better in that regard because Xavier and Akron compete for recruits more often.
Keith Dambrot knew he couldn't keep Boals forever. Just like he knew he couldn't hang onto Shaka Smart for very long. Smart is head coach at VCU. Boals' career is on its way up. He is a great person, and he deserves it.
While I'm thrilled for Boals, I wonder how this will affect Akron's 2010 class and Marshall's commitment to the program. Luckily, the 2010 class will only consist of one player, and Marshall is a high-character person. So, if you had to pick a time for Boals to go, it could be much worse.
It seems like college basketball and football programs are in one of two modes: 1) Hemorrhaging coaches to bigger programs. 2) Looking to fire their coaches. Akron is an exception in that Dambrot has no interest in other jobs. Losing assistant coaches is a small price to pay for building a long-term winning program. Look at all of the coaches Kent State has lost over the past decade. That would be much more traumatic.