ST. LOUIS–Hours after ESPN reported that the University of Missouri’s search for Cuonzo Martin’s replacement had focused on Cleveland State’s Dennis Gates, more reporting has emerged indicating that a deal with Gates was done, pending confirmation by the school’s Board of Curators.
Our news partners at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch report that Missouri is “prepared to hire” Gates.
Meetings for the University of Missouri’s Board of Curators require at least 24 hours notice. As of 12:45 Saturday afternoon, no meeting notice had been posted.
Gates, 42, had Cleveland State in the postseason for the second straight year, this time in the NIT, where the Vikings lost Tuesday against Xavier. He took his program to the NCAA tournament last year. In three years as a head coach, Gates is 50-40. The Chicago native and Cal grad would bring extensive high major experience as an assistant at Marquette and Florida State, where he was on the staff of the 2017-2018 Seminoles club that bounced Missouri from the NCAA tournament in Martin’s first season.
Potential candidates have either come off the board or remained unavailable, including San Francisco’s Todd Golden, who is leaving to become head coach at Florida. San Francisco lost late Thursday night in the NCAA tournament to another possible target, Murray State’s Matt McMahon. The Racers now face an easier path to the Sweet 16 after Saint Peters’ upset of Kentucky in the first round, which would further delay Missouri’s search.