MSU assistant Jim Boylen takes over at Utah!

It is no secret to those around the MSU basketball program how vital Jim Boylen is.  He was the highest paid assistant coach in the nation and he earned every dime.  Izzo has praised Boylen since his arrival and he is well liked and loved by fans, players and the staff alike.

With that said we all know Izzo assistants don’t stick around long, even if they were brought back with the lingering thought that they would one day succeed Izzo.  Boylen has accepted the job as the head coach at the University of Utah.  Boylen told me at the Big Ten tournament after I learned that he was a candidate that he didn’t feel comfortable talking about the job because he had business with MSU to take care of.  He reiterated that he wouldn’t go to Utah nor even pursue the job until the MSU season was done.  He did however keep making this one statement to me “looking for a job with all of this going on isn’t right and I just want to wait until the season is over.  If waiting costs me a job then it wasn’t meant to be.”  His doing it right didn’t cost him, but it cost MSU. 

Losing Boylen is not the end of the program but it is a hard hit.  “I love MSU, and certainly respect the place so much.  The University of Utah is just such a great place and a perfect environment to build a program and raise a family.  I am excited to be part of that family.”

On the prospect of losing Boylen an MSU official told me on March 9, “it would be a loss, but look at Dantonio.  He left and we were able to bring him back.  Sure ideally we would like him to stay but if he goes, we certainly will know where he is at.”

Boylen had opportunities to head coach in the NBA but spurned that life to be in the more family friendly college ranks.  He had opportunities for other NBA jobs last summer for significantly more then he made at MSU, but again turned those down.

I can tell you that Boylen is my friend and his family is considerably more important to him than just getting the money or he would have jumped to the NBA where he has had multiple offers to return.  As a man who admits that his mistress is the Spartan Nation (as I do) I hate to lose him to another school.  As his friend of Jimmy I admit he is such a great coach and candidate that he had to look at every opportunity.  I just respect him for waiting for the season to end.

His ties to the NBA are legendary and are what helped get Mo Ager drafted by Dallas.  Those kinds of ties will help a sleeping Giant like Utah when he can let recruits know that he has the ability if they have the skill to get them into the NBA.  That is a great school and unlike Urban Meyer, who went and rebuilt football and was out before the paint dried, he will be loyal and build a perennial contender.

Boylen loves the family atmosphere of Utah and he will be announced as the new head coach at news conference on Tuesday.  Good luck my friend.  Boylen will meet with the MSU team tonight to talk about his leaving.