Nate Oats will begin his fourth season as head coach of the UB men's basketball team after leading the Bulls to a school record 27 wins last season and their third NCAA Tournament appearance in four years.
For the second time in three seasons as head coach, Oats cut the nets down in Cleveland as the Bulls defeated Toledo 76-66 in the MAC Championship. Oats led the Bulls to their first ever victory in the NCAA Tournament as the #13 Bulls defeated #4 and PAC-12 Champion Arizona, 89-68, in Boise, ID. Oats, who was named the 2018 MAC Coach of the Year and the NABC District Coach of the Year, coached UB to its first outright regular season championship as Buffalo 15-3 in league player, a school record for MAC wins in a season.
The Bulls placed five members on the All-MAC team as CJ Massinburg and Nick Perkins were named to the All-MAC First Team, while Jeremy Harris was named to the second team and Wes Clark named to the All-MAC Third Team. Clark was named the MAC Tournament Most Valuable Player, while Harris was also an all-tournament slection. Perkins was named the MAC's Sixth Man of the Year for the second straight year, while Davonta Jordan was named to the MAC All-Defensive Team.
In 2016-17, the Bulls went 17-15 while earning the number three seed in the Mid-American Conference Tournament, getting a bye straight to Cleveland. Oats helped guide a pair of individual award winners as Dontay Caruthers was named the MAC Defensive Player of the Year and Perkins was named Sixth Man of the Year for the first time.. Blake Hamilton was also named to the All-MAC Second Team.
In his first season, Oats placed two members on the All-MAC Third Team, one one on the All-MAC Freshman Team and one on the newly created All-MAC Defensive Team. The Bulls won the league thanks to a balanced scoring attack that saw four players average at least 11.0 points per game. UB also set single-season records for games played in 2015-16, as well as offensive records for field goals, three pointers, and free throws made and attempted.
Oats was named head coach of the UB men's program on April 11, 2015 after spending two seasons as the top assistant and recruiting coordinator for the Bulls. He comes to Buffalo from Romulus High School in Michigan, where he taught and coached one of the top high school basketball programs in the region.
In his two seasons as an assistant coach under Bobby Hurley, Oats helped lead the Bulls to a 42-20 record, back-to-back MAC East Titles, a MAC Regular Season Title, a MAC Tournament Title and UB’s first ever trip to the NCAA Tournament. Oats was also responsible for recruiting Justin Moss, the 2014-15 MAC Player of the Year.
Prior to joining the Bulls, Oats completed 11 seasons as head coach at Romulus High School in Michigan, winning the school’s first state title in 27 years in 2012-13 and finished the season 27-1. He was named the 2013 Detroit News State Coach of the Year, the Detroit Free Press State Coach of the Year, and BCAM State Coach of the Year.
Prior honors include 2009 Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan Class A Coach of the Year, the 2008 Detroit Free Press Metro Detroit Coach of the Year, and the 2005 Detroit News Metro Detroit Coach of the Year & Detroit Free Press Metro West Coach of the Year
In his time as head coach, he led the team to a 222-52 overall record and seven straight conference championships while going undefeated in conference play in the past four consecutive seasons. The team was ranked in the top 25 nationally on three different occasions (2010, 2011, 2013) and made the Michigan Class A Final Four five times. More importantly, he oversaw a program that had a 100 percent graduation rate and 40 of his 42 seniors at Romulus continuing on to college.
Before coaching at Romulus, he played college basketball at Maranatha Baptist University in Wisconsin where was a captain and All-Conference performer, while earning his bachelor’s degree in Math Education. Oats went on to become an assistant coach at Maranatha from 1997 to 2000. After that, he moved on to the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater from 2000-02.
Nate and his wife Crystal are the proud parents of three girls – Lexie, Jocie and Brielle.