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Ohio State RB coach Tony Alford leaves to coach at rival school

An Ohio State football helmet

Nov 17, 2012; Madison, WI, USA; A Ohio State Buckeyes helmet sits on the sidelines during the game against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Ohio State defeated Wisconsin 21-14 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Longtime Ohio State running backs coach Tony Alford is leaving the school for a surprising destination.

Alford is leaving the Buckeyes staff to take the same position at Michigan. Alford’s X page reflected the change as of Wednesday, with his bio listing him as the run game coordinator and running backs coach at Michigan. He also posted a farewell message to Ohio State on Wednesday.

Alford will replace former Michigan star Mike Hart, who previously held the same positions. It was announced last week that Hart was not being retained by new head coach Sherrone Moore.

Landing Alford is certainly a coup for Michigan, especially since they managed to lure him away from archrival Ohio State. He had been coaching Ohio State’s running backs since 2015, a period that saw him work with the likes of Ezekiel Elliott and JK Dobbins.

The Buckeyes have spent the offseason loading up on talent after their third straight loss to Michigan last year. Michigan will look different next year after Jim Harbaugh’s departure for the NFL, but Alford should provide some useful knowledge about their chief rivals.

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