USCHO.com is reporting that it looks like Carolina Hurricanes prospect Zac Dalpe, who was the team’s second-round pick (45th overall) in the 2008 draft, will leave Ohio State and sign his professional contract.
The Buckeyes fired head coach John Markell this week, and given Dalpe's stated desire to move on to the pro ranks as quickly as possible, it makes sense that the 20-year-old forward would make the move now rather than adapt to a regime change in Columbus. Chances are Dalpe, if he left OSU, would join the Albany River Rats for the balance of the season.
Dalpe led the Buckeyes in goals and points this season, registering 21 goals, 24 assists and 45 points in 38 games. His efforts earned him first-team status on the CCHA All-Star team — the first OSU player since R.J. Umberger in 2003 — and he is one of three finalists for conference player of the year, which will be announced today at the CCHA Awards Banquet in Detroit.
As a freshman last season, Dalpe made the CCHA All-Rookie Team, finishing with 13 goals and 12 assists in 37 games, helping lead Ohio State to the NCAA Tournament.