George Fox University head football coach Chris Casey turned to his former staff at Aloha (Ore.) High School for his first full-time assistant coach, selecting John Bates to be the recruiting coordinator and defensive coordinator for the Bruins’ reconstituted football program.
Bates has an extensive background as a football coach, most recently serving as Casey’s defensive coordinator at Aloha from 2011-12. Prior to his stint at Aloha, he was the defensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Neb., from 2004-10. NWU was consistently ranked in the top 10 nationally in multiple defensive statistical categories during his tenure there, peaking at No. 2 in scoring defense in 2008 by allowing only 11.2 points per game. During the 2002-03 years, he coached at Western Oregon University in the fall and in Europe for the Chrysler Vienna Vikings in Austria in the spring. He was the defensive line coach at WOU and served as defensive coordinator in Vienna.
A 2000 graduate of Whitworth University with a bachelor’s degree in physical education, Bates remained at his alma mater to begin his coaching career as an assistant in 2000-01, primarily coaching linebackers. In 2001, Whitworth won the Northwest Conference crown and made the NCAA Division III playoffs, the Pirates’ first post-season appearance in 25 years. He completed a master of education degree in secondary education from Whitworth in 2006.
Bates and his wife Dana, a health and human performance professor at George Fox who serves as the director of the athletic training education program, reside in Carlton, Ore. They have two children: Ryan, age seven, and Alexandra, age four.