Gator Basketball Head Coach, Mike White’s new hire has been getting settled in his new position. Armon Gates was hired as the teams Associate Head Coach last Sunday. Gates is filling the position once held by Dusty May before he left to become the head coach at Florida Atlantic. Prior to coming to the University of Florida, Gates was with the Northwestern Wildcats where he helped them to their first NCAA Championship back in 2017.
What Drew Him to Florida
Gates was excited to join the Gators because he knows that there’s a positive atmosphere, but also an expectation to win a National Championship. He mentioned that during the hiring process the Gators highlighted the sunshine state. Gates knows how good the weather is here considering he played prep basketball in Ocala, Florida at Hillcrest High School. He said the weather is a good bonus but he would have gone basically anywhere to coach under Mike White.
Gates says that Coach White is not only a “players coach” but a “coaches coach”.
Before the coaching search started Mike White and Armon Gates paths had crossed a few years back on the recruiting trail. This was while Coach White was still working at Louisiana Tech (2011-2015). Gates expressed that back then he enjoyed White’s attitude.
Jumping Right In
Gates said he’s ready to bring a ton of energy and passion to the team. The offense is Coach Gates strength, so he’s especially excited to be working with the shooters on the team.
In Gates’ first staff meeting, there was a big emphasis on recruiting. And while he doesn’t believe it should be too difficult to transition to recruiting at the University Florida, he is going to look to his colleges for advise.
Gates says that while he isn’t as familiar with the local high school players as the staff, he does know them fairly well being that Florida in a “universal” recruiting spot. He also has ties to the state with his brother, Dennis Gates, being an Assistant Coach at Florida State. His Brother Dennis tweeted about the new family rivalry and Armon promises to respond.
Still waiting on that response…