The gam tips off at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN
The Hoosiers will play on New Years Eve for the fifth straight season
Former Indiana player and assistant coach Dan Dakich was named interim head coach of the Hoosiers on February 22. He returned to Bloomington this past summer as Director of Basketball Operations and was named an assistant coach in October.
The Indiana native began a 16-year association with the IU program in the fall of 1981 after graduating from Andrean High School in Merrillville.
He played for the Hoosiers and Coach Bob Knight from 1982-85 and was a team captain during his junior and senior seasons as the Hoosiers finished with an 84-39 record during his career. As a player, he helped Indiana win one Big Ten title, earn three NCAA Tournament berths and finish as the NIT runner-up his senior season. As a junior, he was named All-Tournament at the Indiana Classic and as a senior he earned similar accolades at the Hoosier Classic. He is best remembered for his excellent defensive effort against Michael Jordan in Indiana's upset of North Carolina in the 1984 NCAA East Regional.
Dakich also spent 12 seasons on the IU coaching staff under Coach Knight from 1985-97. Dakich helped the Indiana program win 73.7 percent (283-101) of its games over the 12 years he served as an assistant coach while the Hoosiers were winning over 70 percent of their Big Ten contests. He was a graduate assistant from 1985-87 before being named full-time prior to the 1987-88 campaign.
The Hoosiers won a national title in 1987 and earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament in each of his 12 seasons on the staff. IU also captured four Big Ten titles while finishing third or better in nine of his 12 years.
He also coached six All-Americans and three national Player of the Year candidates, including 1993 Player of the Year Calbert Cheaney, worked with three Big Ten MVPs, and academically, graduated every four-year player to go through the program (Dakich was the academic monitor on the IU basketball staff his last seven years).
He also coached 10 players at IU who have played in the NBA.
Dakich returns to Bloomington after spending the last 10 years as the men's basketball coach at Bowling Green (156-140). At BGSU, he tied for third all-time in victories among Falcon coaches with 156 and also was just one of three coaches in school history to post four 18-plus win seasons or more in men's basketball. He saw 22 of 25 seniors complete their degree requirements and had 12 former players sign professional contracts, including current Indiana Pacers guard Keith McLeod. In addition, he had two players earn MAC Player of the Year and three lead the league in scoring during his tenure.
His 2000 squad won the regular season MAC title and played in the NIT and in 2002 his team advanced to the MAC Tournament title game and also played in the NIT. Dakich also was heavily involved in community activities. He ran the Junior Falcons basketball program, a league for children ages 7 thru 14. He also was involved with the United Way, Cherry Street Mission and Make-A-Wish program.
Dakich, who was one of 16 former prep players chosen for the 2006 Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame High School Silver Anniversary team, is a 1985 graduate of IU with a degree in telecommunications. He and his wife, Jackie, have a son, Andrew (13), and a daughter, Laura (10).
Check back soon