UGA public relations released a photo of Mike White

Mike White: Georgia basketball has ‘limitless future;’ AD Josh Brooks seeks ‘national success’

ATHENS — Mike White thanked Florida in one breath and let out a “Go Dawgs” in the next in the Sunday night school release announcing his hire as Georgia’s new men’s basketball coach.

“I believe in the limitless future of Georgia Basketball,” White said in the release after thanking his new bosses for hiring him and proclaiming his intentions to develop student-athletes off the court as well as on it.

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“I am extraordinarily grateful to the leadership of Scott Stricklin and to the entire Florida Athletics staff for an amazing experience during my tenure …. to the Georgia Basketball family, friends and fans, I’m ready to get to work. Go Dawgs!”

White averaged more than 22 wins in his 11 seasons coaching at Florida (seven seasons) and Louisiana Tech (four seasons).

White was the 2017 SEC Coach of the Year and eight different Gators earned All-SEC honors during his time in Gainesville.

Florida went 19-13 (9-9 SEC) under White’s direction this season, missing the NCAA tournament. The Gators were the only team in the SEC to make the previous four NCAA tournaments, including an Elite Eight run in 2016-17.

Georgia, conversely, hasn’t played in the NCAA tournament since 2015, and that last UGA NCAA tourney win that counted came back in 1996.

Coach Tom Crean was fired last week after the Bulldogs bowed out of the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament in the first round, falling 86-51 last Wednesday night in Tampa.

UGA athletic director Josh Brooks did not extend Crean’s contract after last season, making this campaign a make-or-break year for the former Marquette Final Four coach and Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Brooks made it clear he is confident White can elevate the program to compete in the NCAA tournament.

“We have witnessed Coach White to be a leader of men, as well as a proven winner with an impressive postseason body of work,” Brooks said. “We want to compete for national success in all 21 of our sports, and we believe that he is the coach that can build Georgia Basketball to a consistent winner on the collegiate basketball landscape.”

White was 142-88 at Florida with four NCAA tournament trips in his seven seasons with the Gators. At Louisiana Tech (2011-15), White was 101-40 with three regular-season titles and three trips to the NIT.

What was the WAC Coach of the Year in 2013 at Louisiana Tech, and the Conference-USA Coach of the Year in 2015.

Prior to launching his head coaching career, White paid his dues with seven years as an assistant coach at Ole Miss (2004-11) where he was a four-year starter for the Rebels (1995-99).

White was a part of Ole Miss teams that made three NCAA tournament appearances and won an NCAA tournament game for the first time in school history.

Here’s White’s interview after he was hired in 2015 to take over the Florida program

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