Florida hires Louisiana Tech's Michael White to replace Billy Donovan
Donovan left Florida late last month to coach the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder after 19 seasons with the Gators.
White agreed in principle to a six-year contract at an annual average of $2 million, Florida announced.
White, 38, was the Conference USA Coach of the Year this past season after leading Louisiana Tech to a 27–9 overall record and 15–3 mark in conference play. The Bulldogs hired White in 2011, and he led the program to a 101–40 record and three consecutive C-USA championships.
"Michael White is someone who came to the top of our list very quickly and he checks all of the boxes we were looking for," Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley said in a release. "He is a winner who has a high level of integrity, plays an up-tempo style of play and has the respect of his peers and the basketball community. He has experience in coaching, recruiting and playing in the Southeastern Conference and has a strong pedigree. He has a certain authenticity with people and is not afraid of challenges."
Louisiana Tech did not make the NCAA tournament under White, but reached the NIT in each of the past three seasons and advanced to the quarterfinals the past two.
"I have an incredible amount of respect for the University of Florida, and I am so excited to be a Gator," White said. "Not only is Florida home for me, but the tradition and success that the Gators have built make this an incredible opportunity. I know about the great home court advantage in the O'Connell Center, which is a testament to the fans and the Rowdy Reptiles. There's an unbelievable commitment to excellence athletically and academically at UF, and it starts with the leadership of [UF president Kent] Fuchs and Jeremy Foley. I look forward to returning to the SEC where I have a lot of great memories, and I can’t wait to create many more alongside The Gator Nation."
- Mike Fiammetta