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Dennis Gates Makes It All But Official. . .
Will Definitely Sign With Cal--(April 12,1998)

We've been speculating for several weeks now over whether Cal would get Dennis Gates (6'-3" Sr. SG) from Chicago's Whitney Young, the Illinois State Champions. We reported that Gates was taking his official visit there this weekend.

Well, he really liked it. So much so that he told reporters yesterday that he intends on Monday to sign a letter of intent. He told the coaching staff on Saturday night that he would accept the scholarship they offered, and plans to complete the paperwork Monday.

Gates told the Oakland Tribune that he arrived in the Bay Area Friday night virtually certain Cal was the place for him. "I pretty much knew about it -- I just wanted to see it," Gates said. "I'm enjoying myself. I like it a lot." Whitney Young assistant coach Mike Naiditch told the Tribune that Cal had Gates "all but locked up" even before his recruiting visit. "This was the offer he had been waiting for --a scholarship, a great school, a great conference, an opportunity to play and a great location," Naiditch said.

Gates told the Tribune that his friendship with Cal freshman forward Sean Lampley, also a Chicago native, helped convince him Berkeley was the place to be. "Talking to Sean pretty much made me a believer," said Gates, who played with Lampley during the summer with the AAU Illinois Warriors. "He loves it. Us being from the same area, if he likes, I'm sure I wouldn't have a problem with it."

Gates averaged 11.4 points for a 30-1 team that features five players who are signing Division I college scholarships. And Whitney Young is not the only school with 5 D-I signees this year. At least one school, and maybe more if we thought about it, in California has done the same thing: State Champs Westchester are sending 5 players to D-I schools this year: David Bluthenthal and Brandon Granville to USC, Albert Miller to Washington State, C.J. Williams to Boise State, and Tony Bland to Syracuse.

Congratulations to Dennis Gates and to the Cal Bears.

The Swish Award
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