(updated August 2016)
One of the best recruiters in the ACC and one of the main reasons Florida State has revitalized its pipeline to the NBA, Dennis Gates is in his sixth season as a member of Leonard Hamilton’s coaching staff at Florida State. The Seminoles are recruiting at a level never before seen in Tallahassee and Gates’ tireless efforts as a national and worldwide recruiter has helped the Seminoles recruit the nation’s top talent to Tallahassee.
Because of Gates’ incredible ability to build lasting relationships, Florida State’s current recruiting class of Jonathan Isaac, Trent Forrest and CJ Walker is ranked No. 8 nationally in 2016. The Seminoles’ 2015 class of Dwayne Bacon, Malik Beasley, Terance Mann and Christ Koumadje was ranked as high as the No. 3 recruiting class in the nation. Beasley was the first one-and-done player in school history and was a first round draft choice of the Denver Nuggets in the 2016 NBA Draft.
Gates’ ability to recruit star basketball players since joining Hamilton’s staff in 2011 is evident when one scans Florida State’s current roster. Nearly half of the players on the Seminoles’ roster for the upcoming season were ranked in the nation’s top 100 players when they were recruited including Isaac (No. 9), Bacon (No. 22), junior Xavier Rathan-Mayes (No. 24), Forrest (No. 45), junior Phil Cofer (No. 56), senior Jarquez Smith (No. 63), CJ Walker (No. 82), and Mann (No. 94).
Gates connects with players and families like very few college basketball coaches can. It’s his ability to connect with a recruit and then help them reach the next level of basketball during their collegiate careers that makes Gates so incredibly successful.
With Gates on the staff, the Seminoles have firmly established themselves as the third-winningest program in the ACC in the last 11 years (since the 2005-06 season) in total wins (233). The Seminoles are joined by only Duke and North Carolina as the three teams who have won more than 60 percent of their ACC games in the last 11 seasons.
Gates was an integral member of the Seminoles’ coaching staff in 2012 when the Seminoles won the first ACC Championship in school history, played in the NCAA Tournament for the school-record fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament (also in 2012), finished the season ranked in the top 15 by the major polls, defeated an ACC-best six ranked teams, tied the school record for ACC wins with a 12-4 mark in ACC play, beat Duke and North Carolina twice each for the first time in school history, beat all four Tobacco Road teams in the same season for the first time and finished in the top 10 in the NCAA statistics in both field goal percentage defense and blocked shots.
One of the sharpest minds in college basketball, Gates was hired as a graduate assistant at Florida State in 2005. After stops at Marquette, Cal and in the NBA with the Los Angeles Clippers, he coached at Northern Illinois in 2008 and was elevated to the position of associate head coach after just one season with the Huskies. At only 28 years of age, he became one of the youngest associate head coaches in all of college basketball. He was Northern Illinois' lead recruiter, coached the Huskie guards and helped numerous players earn All-Mid-American Conference and MAC All-Freshman honors during his two years there.
OUTSTANDING RECRUITING SUCCESS
GATES’ SUCCESS WITH FLORIDA STATE’S GUARDS
PREPARING PLAYERS TO REACH THE NBA
SECOND TIME AROUND
COACHING IS A FAMILY AFFAIR
Dennis Gates' Coaching Record
Assistant Coaching Record