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Andrew Dakich departs from Michigan and for him, it made sense

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While it was a surprise that Andrew Dakich decided to leave Michigan and play for their arch rival in Ohio State, it made perfect sense for the ex-Wolverine guard.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Four-Michigan vs Tulsa Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

It seemed like Michigan was finally settled in at the point guard position this offseason.

Derrick Walton Jr. graduated after having a phenomenal ending to his time at Michigan, leaving the now sophomore point guard Xavier Simpson as the favorite to take the starting role on the roster.

Then came graduate transfer from Ohio Jaaron Simmons.

John Beilein wanted more experience for this upcoming season at that position, and believes that Simmons will be able to fill that void nicely with the Wolverines for his last year of college eligibility.

Next was the decision of Moritz Wagner staying at Michigan for another year, and D.J. Wilson electing to test the NBA waters, where he now is signed by the Milwaukee Bucks after being the 17th overall draft pick.

Everything seemed to be calm and coming to a stopping point, and Michigan knew what they had coming back.

What they didn't see, was Andrew Dakich electing to go play for their arch rival. Ohio State.

But here we are, it happened again.

Dakich is the third straight player to leave Michigan in the past three seasons as a grad transfer that will play for another Big Ten school.

It should also be known, that the past two times that happened with Max Bielfeldt (Indiana) and Spike Albrecht (Purdue) they won the Big Ten regular season title, but were upset by Michigan later in the Big Ten Tournament.

Whether Dakich will help make a difference on Ohio State remains to be seen, but what is for sure known is that it seemed like a match made in heaven for the guard, as he told mlive.com.

"This was just the best opportunity for me, I know I'll get crushed by some Michigan fans and I get that," Dakich told mlive. "But if they put themselves in my shoes, I think a lot of people would have done the same thing."

As hard as it may be to cross enemy lines and play for the most hated rival by the Michigan fan base, it's understandable as to why Dakich made the move.

His playing time at Michigan went down every single season to the point where he didn't play in 2017.

In the 2015-16 season, Dakich got action in 24 games but only averaged 4.6 minutes per game. He never averaged over six minutes per game in the three seasons that he got playing time.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Four-Michigan vs Tulsa Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Beilein's main use for Dakich was to fill in for starters when injuries would occur, for example when Walton or Albrecht were hurt, his playing time would rise. He never got the chance to start at Michigan.

Chris Holtmann may see something else in Dakich.

As the new coach at OSU, Holtmann said that he needed help in the backcourt. It just so happens that Holtmann was recruiting Dakich to play as a grad transfer at Butler earlier this offseason, and now landing the job with the Buckeyes, it makes sense as to why Dakich would take an opportunity to have more playing time in a conference he is familiar with.

It goes beyond just basketball, however. The 6-foot-2, 190-pounder planned to attend Quinnipiac for this upcoming school year to start his journalism graduate program, but didn't get in.

When you take that into account, plus a coach who sees potential in him as a grad transfer and a shot at more playing time on a bigger stage than a mid-major school, it adds up to a equation for success in Dakich's eyes.

Of course, the school and program he is leaving has feelings as well, and Dakich isn't leaving on a sour note.

Holtmann and Dakich both spoke with Beilein before anything was finalized, and it wasn't something the Wolverines head coach was opposed to. Dakich has his full support.

"He was great, he understood my situation completely and I'll actually be up there this week to work a camp for him," Dakich told mlive. "There's no bad blood at all. He's happy for me to have this opportunity to play at Ohio State for a great coach he respects. And coach Holtmann had the same conversation with him.

"This all happened about a week ago and coach Beilein was great. I have the utmost respect for him and he knows that."

As a former walk-on with Michigan, Dakich still has "some of his best friends" on Michigan's returning team, but winning will be the most important objective when they meet on the floor.

Michigan v Oregon Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Rivalries don't die, no matter what the circumstances are. One side wants to beat the other.

So while Michigan has moved on to Simmons and Simpson, Dakich has a new mission, and that will be to beat his former teammates and friends.

Whether that happens or not will be decided on the hardwood, but for Dakich, the choice to go to the Buckeyes made sense.