Boals leaving Stony Brook for alma mater Ohio

Ohio has hired Stony Brook's Jeff Boals as its next head coach, the school announced Sunday.

Boals played at Ohio in the early 1990s and began his coaching career as an assistant with the Bobcats for one season in 1995-96.

"I am incredibly grateful and honored to return home to my alma mater as the head men's basketball at Ohio University," Boals said in a release. "My family and I are thrilled to see my coaching career come full circle with this opportunity. Sincere thanks to [university president] Dr. [M. Duane] Nellis and to Jim Schaus for their confidence in me to lead the young men of Ohio both on and off the court."

Boals was a longtime assistant under Thad Matta at Ohio State before taking over at Stony Brook in 2016. In three years with the Seawolves, Boals went 55-41 overall and 31-17 in America East play. They finished second in the league this season before falling in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament.

"I am ecstatic about our hiring of Jeff Boals to lead our men's basketball program," Schaus said. "He is the perfect fit for us and checks all the boxes. Of course, Jeff is a Bobcat and former player so he understands what it is like to play and succeed here. Jeff is a proven head coach with a wealth of successful coaching experience during his career He is well-respected for his knowledge of the game and knows how to develop players. He is a great person that will relate well to his players, assistant coaches, staff and fans. The future is bright for Ohio men's basketball with Jeff Boals leading the way. I can't wait for him to get started!"

Boals replaces Saul Phillips, who was fired after five seasons at Ohio.