New Florida basketball assistant Armon Gates reportedly out and on his way to Nebraska

By Adam Silverstein
May 3, 2018
New Florida basketball assistant Armon Gates reportedly out and on his way to Nebraska
Basketball

Image Credit: Tim Casey/UAA

Less than a month after he was hired as the latest member of the Florida Gators basketball coaching staff, associate head coach Armon Gates is reportedly leaving the program to join the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

Gates, who was hired just over two weeks after Dusty May departed to take the reigns at Florida Atlantic, was previously a long-time assistant at Northwestern who was hired by Florida head coach Mike White following “an extensive national search” that found Gates continuously at the top of White’s list. White referred to Gates as “a rising star in the industry [who] brings infectious energy and has won everywhere he’s been.”

Many agree with that assessment of Gates, a Chicago native highly acclaimed for developing guards, experience that candidly ran somewhat contrary to the Gators’ greatest need of an assistant to help develop big men.

“I can’t express how excited I am to be a part of the Gator Nation,” Gates said in a statement at the time. “The rich tradition of the University of Florida was too enticing to pass up. … I cannot wait to experience the Rowdy Reptiles! Go Gators!”

Now, just over a month later, following weeks of speculation about his future with the program, Gates appears to be out. Prep basketball writer Joe Hendricksen of the Chicago Sun-Times reported Thursday that Gates chose Florida over “multiple offers on the table” for his services, but the good times quickly ended after he took the job.

According to multiple sources, White began feeling uncomfortable with the overall dynamic and makeup of the staff he put together. The head coach is the boss and usually has unyielding power in the program he runs. Thus, White made the move he felt was necessary for himself and the program, no matter the odd timing of it or the repercussions.

Hendrick goes on to criticize White for “fickle decision-making,” claiming “Gates was blindsided and unnecessarily left high and dry.” However, that editorializing appears to be one-sided considering talk of Gates-to-Nebraska has been going on for weeks and it is unclear the reason why the White-Gates relationship did not work. Furthermore, Gates has been on the road recruiting for the Gators, so it’s not like the relationship was so sour or the problem was so major that it necessitated in an immediate separation between the parties.

Gates’ Twitter account is now without mention of Florida, though UF’s website still lists him as a Gators assistant. OnlyGators.com reached out to Florida for comment but has not heard back at this time.

OnlyGators.com will update this breaking news story as more information becomes available.

One Comment

  1. Corey says:

    His only function so far has been recruiting on the road. My guess is MW saw something questionable that he knew wouldn’t fly at UF.

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