Per press release, Cleveland State University is hiring Dennis Gates to be the head coach of the men’s basketball program. Gates has been an assistant at Florida State for the last eight years. In those eight years, Florida State has a record of 180-99 with three NIT appearances and four NCAA Tournament appearances.
Athletic Director Scott Garrett was quoted as saying, “We are supremely confident of Dennis’ ability to return Cleveland State to a competitive force in the Horizon League. His character, composure, professionalism, care for student-athlete development and well-being — as well as his basketball expertise — are a perfect fit for Cleveland State University”.
Gates has helped recruit Malik Beasley, Jonathan Isaac, Dwayne Bacon and Xavier Rathan-Mayes to Florida State, all of whom have gone to play in the NBA. Gates has even spent time in the NBA as skill development coach for the Los Angeles Clippers.
When it comes to developing guards, Gates has had major success helping them evolve their games. Gates has worked with guards Luke Loucks, Ian Miller, Devon Bookert, Rathan-Mayes, and Beasley who all saw marked improvements in their game under his tuteludge.
Loucks one time dished out an ACC Tournament record 13 assists in the championship game. In 2014, Miller won the ACC’s Sixth Man of the Year award and Bookert shot a .419 3-point field goal percentage in four years at Florida state making him of the best shooters in school history. While Rathan-Mayes was named to the ACC’s All-Freshman team in 2015 and to the ACC’s All-Defensive team in 2017. Beasley was named to the ACC’s All-Freshman team in 2016 and was drafted in the first round in 2016, making him the first one-and-done player in school history.
Gates has been an assistant coach at Marquette, Cal, Northern Illinois, Nevada and Florida State. Those universities have an overall record of 268-224, when Gates was there. Overall making five NIT appearances and making five NCAA Tournament appearances.
Gates has been mentored by Tom Crean at Marquette, Alvin Gentry of the New Orleans Pelicans and Dennis Johnson of the Clippers. Gates’ brother, Armon Gates is currently an assistant coach at Nebraska University. Armon has ties to Ohio playing at Kent State from 2002-2007 and being an assistant coach there from 2008-2010.
Armon could possibly join Gates’ coaching staff as an assistant. As it is important to note that Fred Hoiberg just took over the men’s program for Nebraska and Armon was the only assistant to survive that worked for the previous staff. While Armon did impress Hoiberg in keeping him, Armon could want to create something special in Cleveland, Ohio with his brother.
Gates was one of the youngest associate head coaches in college basketball at the age of 28. Now he is leading Cleveland State Men’s Basketball.