clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Michael White adds Dusty May to Florida staff, importing all three Louisiana Tech assistants

Florida won't have that much continuity from the Billy Donovan regime — but Michael White will have plenty from his own.

Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sports

Florida's Michael White has hired Dusty May, the most experienced of his three Louisiana Tech assistant coaches in 2014-15, to the same position at Florida, the school reports of the move.

With the hiring, White will have the same staff of assistant coaches at Florida in 2015-16 as he had in Ruston last season. May, 37, was the only one of those coaches to predate White at Louisiana Tech: The Indiana graduate had been in Ruston since 2009, first as an assistant on former coach Kerry Rupp's staff and then as White's "associate head coach" in 2014-15.

He spent four years as an undergraduate student manager under Bobby Knight at Indiana, graduating in 2000, then a year in a video coordinator position at USC, before returning to Indiana for other basketball operations jobs under Mike Davis, then decamping for similar positions at Eastern Michigan and Murray State. Eventually, May would follow Davis to UAB, where he got his first assistant coach gig; after two seasons in Birmingham, May finally found a place to put down roots at Louisiana Tech.

May was considered a candidate to succeed White as head coach of the Bulldogs, with former players agitating for his hiring, most notably 2015 Conference USA Player of the Year Kenneth "Speedy" Smith, who led a one-man campaign for his former coach. But May reportedly decided to join White in Gainesville on Wednesday, telling Louisiana Tech players as much before leaving for Gainesville. White said in his opening press conference on Monday that he would hold the third assistant spot for May if he didn't end up getting hired by Louisiana Tech, so his hiring at Florida is wholly unsurprising.

What is surprising is White's full-fledged transfer of coaches from Louisiana Tech to Florida. While I don't have numbers in front of me, and would need to research recent coaching hires to be certain, I suspect it is exceedingly rare for a new head coach at a major program to be able to bring his full complement of assistant coaches directly from a prior role; coaches usually bring along former assistants, but not all of them.

The ramifications of that imported continuity, in White's case, are clear: More old hands will help teach Florida's players their new system, and he'll have a level of comfort with people he knows well. The value of it is up for debate.

The hiring of May additionally confirms that Florida will not retain any of Donovan's assistant coaches. Anthony Grant's move to Oklahoma City to follow Donovan had previously been reported, while more recent reports have suggested that Rashon Burno will head to Nebraska to join Tim Miles's staff. John Pelphrey, Donovan's longest-serving assistant, is, for the moment, the odd man out.