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Dennis Gates off to fast start in rebuilding Mizzou basketball

Gates may not have been a choice Tiger fans were crazy about when he was named head coach, but after a hot start in the transfer portal, the excitement is building.

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Dennis Gates may not have been a name that moved the needle for a lot of Missouri Tigers fans when he was hired, but thanks to a transfer portal hot streak, Gates has the program reinvigorated once again.

On Friday, the former Cleveland State head coach landed a commitment from point guard Sean East, last year's junior college player of the year.

East is just the latest in a line of Gates' additions to rebuild the program after the school fired Cuonzo Martin as head coach in March.

This list is an impressive one as far as transfers, recruits and coaches go.

Mohamed Diarra - The top JUCO player available this offseason, Diarra is a 6-foot-10 forward originally from Paris and had been averaging 17.8 points and 12.6 rebounds a game at Garden City Community College in Kansas.

Aidan Shaw - Perhaps the biggest addition for Mizzou under Gates was a re-addition. Shaw had committed to the Tigers under Martin, but then re-opened his recruitment after the coaching change. The 4-star recruit from Overland Park, Kansas, also had offers from Kansas, Iowa and Arkansas to name a few.

DeAndre Ghloston - Gates convinced guard DeAndre Gholston to pick the Tigers after averaging 14.3 and 16.9 points a game in his last two years at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Tre Gomillion - Gates brought guard Gomillion along with him from Cleveland State. Gomillion shot 40% from three in his last season under Gates, averaging 10.5 points per game.

Noah Carter - Gates reeled in transfer Noah Carter from Northern Iowa, who had offers from Arkansas, Florida, Marquette and Virginia Tech to name a few. A   6-foot-6 forward, Carter has shown an ability to do it all, averaging 15 points, 4.1 rebounds and still shot around 30% from beyond the arc.

For his assistants, Gates brought in Charlton Young and Dickey Nutt.

Gates worked with Young at Florida State, and the pair teamed up to recruit some major talent to play for the Seminoles.

Nutt has also worked with Gates before at Florida State and Cleveland State. Nutt has also been a head coach at Arkansas State and Southeast Missouri State.

Gates may have lost incumbent rising star Trevon Brazile to Arkansas and leader Javon Pickett to SLU, but it looks like top scorer Kobe Brown is set to return.

According to 5 On Your Side's Frank Cusumano, Fort Zumwalt North big man Connor Turnbull is also in play for the Tigers. Turnbull is a 3-star recruit who had been committed to Butler, but reopened his commitment after a coaching change there.

Rebuilding a nearly bare cupboard at Mizzou that went 12-21 with the players they did have is a tall task.

Although we've yet to see Dennis Gates' coaching ability on the court just yet, it's hard to discount the promising start he's had when it comes to bringing in talent.

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