Dennis Gates
Dennis Gates
Title: Head Coach

Cleveland State Director of Athletics Scott Garrett named Dennis Gates as the Vikings head men’s basketball coach on July 26, 2019. Gates becomes the 16th head coach in Cleveland State men’s basketball history.

Gates, who owns 16 years of Division I coaching experience, has spent the previous eight seasons on Leonard Hamilton’s staff at Florida State. Gates’ tenure at Florida State mirrored the Seminoles rise to national prominence. With Gates on the staff, the Seminoles played in four NCAA Tournaments, advanced to the Elite Eight of the 2018 NCAA Tournament and advanced to the Sweet 16 in both 2012 and 2019.

Last season, Gates helped lead the Seminoles to a 29-8 overall record and a 13-5 mark in the Atlantic Coast Conference and Florida State advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles established school records for overall wins in a season and ACC wins in a season.

In 2017-18, Florida State had a 23-12 overall record and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 25 years.

In his first year back at Florida State in 2011-12 the Seminoles captured the ACC title for the first time in school history.

Gates’ work in recruiting has helped Florida State become a fixture in the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles have had five NBA Draft picks in the past four seasons, including one lottery pick. Gates was instrumental in bringing in four consecutive top-15 ranked recruiting classes to Florida State.

During his tenure in Tallahassee, Gates has helped recruit top-100 players including 2017 NBA Lottery pick Jonathan Isaac (No. 9), 2017 NBA Draft choice Dwayne Bacon, (No. 22), NBA free-agent signee Xavier Rathan-Mayes (No. 24), sophomore M.J. Walker (No. 24), junior Trent Forrest (No. 45), senior Phil Cofer (No. 56) and 2019 NBA Draft choice Terance Mann (No. 94).

Before joining the staff at Florida State, Gates worked at Marquette, Cal, Northern Illinois and Nevada. During his coaching career, Gates has served on coaching staffs that made 10 postseason appearances. In addition to the four NCAA Tournament trips at Florida State, Gates also served as an assistant coach under Ben Braun at Cal when the Golden Bears advanced to the NCAA’s in 2006.

Gates began his career as a coaching assistant with the Los Angeles Clippers as a skill development coach during the 2002-03 season. He worked with a collection of players that included 10 prospects with three, or fewer, years of experience including future All-Stars Elton Brand and Lamar Odom.

Gates has learned from some of basketball’s all-time great coaches including Hamilton who ranks as one of the top 10 all-time winningest coaches in ACC history. He played, and coached, under Braun at Cal (a finalist for the 2003 Naismith National Coach of the Year award), Tom Crean at Marquette (the 2012 National Coach of the Year by ESPN.com), Ricardo Patton at Northern Illinois and David Carter at Nevada.

Gates was a combo guard at Cal, where the Golden Bears compiled an 83-46 record and won 20 games in a season three times. In 2002, the Bears reached the semifinals of the Pac-10 Tournament and the second round of the NCAA Tournament. He played in 114 career games, started 34 games and finished his career with a scoring average of 3.8 points per game as well as recording 100 steals and 148 assists. Additionally, Gates was a three-year captain of the Golden Bears.

Gates, a Chicago native and graduate of Whitney Young High School, was a two-time Pac-10 First Team All-Academic Team selection, was named Cal’s Most Inspirational Player in 2001 and was named the Bears’ Outstanding Student-Athlete in 1999 and 2001. In addition, he was awarded the 2002 Pac-10 Medal of Honor, which is presented to the Pac-10 Universities Top Graduating Student-Athlete.

Gates earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology from Cal in just three years and played as a master’s degree candidate in education during his senior campaign. He earned his Master of Science degree in Adult Education and Human Resource Development from Florida State University in 2005.

 

Year

School

Overall Record

ConferenceRecord

Accomplishments

2003-04

Marquette

(Asst. Coach)

19-12

8-8 CUSA

NIT Quarterfinals

2004-05

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

12-19

4-12 ACC

Defeated No. 3 Wake Forest

2005-06

Cal

(Asst. Coach)

20-11

12-6 PAC-10

NCAA 1st Round

2006-07

Cal

(Asst. Coach)

16-17

6-12 PAC-10

Defeated No. 4 ranked UCLA; No. 15 ranked Oregon

2007-08

Northern Illinois

(Asst. Coach)

6-22

3-12 MAC

Coached MAC Freshman of the Year

2008-09

Northern Illinois

(Asst. Coach)

10-20

5-11 MAC

Coached two All-MAC selections

2009-10

Nevada

(Asst. Coach)

21-13

11-5 WAC

NIT 1st Round

2010-11

Nevada

(Asst. Coach)

13-19

8-8 WAC

Coached WAC Freshman of the Year

2011-12

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

25-10

12-4 ACC

NCAA East Regional 3rd Round; ACC Champions

2012-13

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

18-16

9-9 ACC

NIT 1st Round

2013-14

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

22-14

9-9 ACC

NIT Semifinals

2014-15

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

17-16

8-10 ACC

Defeated No. 23 Miami (Fla.)

2015-16

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

20-14

8-10 ACC

NIT 2nd Round

2016-17

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

26-9

12-6 ACC

NCAA West Regional 2nd Round; ACC 2nd Place

2017-18

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

23-12

9-9 ACC

NCAA West Regional Finals

2018-19

Florida State

(Asst. Coach)

29-8

13-5 ACC

NCAA West Regional 3rd Round