Born and raised in Central New York state Coach Bates attended Skaneateles High School, located just west of Syracuse, NY. Bates was a 3 year letterwinner in Football and a 2 year letterwinner in Lacrosse where he played for the Hall of Fame coach Ron Doctor. Following a 1st Team All-League and All-State senior year on the gridiron, Bates accepted a football offer to attend Taylor University in Indiana. At Taylor he enjoyed a successful football career being a part of a team that that participated in the NAIA playoffs twice during his career along with being ranked in the Top 25. On the lacrosse field, Bates was elected a team captain 3 times during his 4 year career. Bates finished his lacrosse career at Taylor as a 4 year starter and led the team in scoring as a junior and senior. He currently ranks 2nd all time in points at Taylor and 1st in assists. He finished his senior year ranked #8 in scoring in the country and was named a 1st team All-Conference player as well as being named to the USLIA All-American team.
Following his collegiate playing career, Bates was named the head coach at Taylor where he spent 5 years continuing to build the program. During his tenure the Trojans reached the playoffs 3 times and played in the conference championship game twice. He also directed the team to a #22 and #15 national ranking in his final two seasons. Over the course of his time at Taylor he coached 2 All-Americans, 14 All-Conference Players, and 4 Academic All-Conference players. He finished his time there with a 23-12 record. This still ranks as the most wins by any coach at Taylor.
Bates took his talents to the high school level where he served as Asst. Athletic Director and Head Boy’s Varsity Lacrosse Coach at Heritage Christian School in Indianapolis. He took over a new varsity program and instantly guided them to prominence within the state and Midwest region. In the two years Bates was the head coach, the team reached the playoffs twice and the Final Four in his final season. The teams ranked #7 and #4 respectively. Other than receiving the Indiana High School Lacrosse Coach of the Year award in his final year, he coached 1 All-American, 14 All-State players and the Player of the Year in 2007. Bates was also instrumental in beginning the girl’s lacrosse and intermediate boys programs at Heritage. He also served as a founder and first Vice President of the Indiana Youth Lacrosse Association. This is the governing body for all 1st grade thru 8th grade boys and girls teams in the state. Also during his time in Indiana, Bates played on the highly competitive Indy Cyclones men’s club team where he was an attackmen and midfielder for 6 seasons.
Following his success at the high school level he was offered a job at Messiah College (NCAA D3) in Pennsylvania. During his three seasons there he served as the offensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator. In his first year, Bates was part of a coaching staff that produced the Conference Player of the Year, Conference Rookie of the Year, 2 Conference Player of the Week winners, 7 All-Conference players, 1 Academic All-American selection and 1 Division III North-South Game selection. The team also won the regular season title and played in the conference championship game. During his final two seasons, Bates stepped off the sidelines, for the most part, to focus on coordinating national recruiting efforts. For two years he also served as Asst. Camp Director for the 4 summer instructional camps Messiah holds each summer serving over 600 kids.
As well as recruiting for Messiah, Bates spent one season back home in NY teaching and coaching at Skaneateles High School. There he worked with the offensive personnel while assisting the program to the Final Four, a #12 NY state ranking and a #36 National ranking. Bates also coached the defensive line and linebackers for the varsity football team.
In the summer of 2010 Bates accepted an Asst. Coach position at Guilford College in Greensboro. In the first year on the Guilford sidelines, Bates helped direct a resurgence of success in the Quaker program. The team finished 9-7 (the most wins in 19 years at the school), missed the ODAC playoffs by ½ a game, coached 1 All-Conference player, 1 Conference Player of the Week, achieved the 7th largest upset in Div. III and the 3rd largest turnaround in all of Div. III. Bates also serves as the recruiting coordinator at Guilford and directed the influx of 19 new players to help solidify Guilford’s rebuilding efforts for the 2012 season.
Coach Bates has been involved in FCA lacrosse camps around the country for over 15 years. He also has worked Top 205, Battle of the Hotbeds (Delaware), King of the Hill (Princeton/Penn/Drexel), VMI Fall Showcase, Mid-Summer Classic (Greensboro), Battle of the Boro, Duke University Boys Camp, and many others over the years.
Bates understands the current direction college coaches are taking in regards to recruiting, what they are look for in student athletes, and what venues will give each player the maximum exposure. He has linked up with Hilltopper Lacrosse because he feels this program is one that will field high level talent, will provide excellent instruction, will help athletes achieve their potential, and ultimately assist them in playing at a college or university that suits their needs and abilities.