Chris Bates, whose calmness and strength serve as the bedrock of the Princeton men's lacrosse program, is in his sixth year as the head coach of the Tigers.
Bates has led Princeton to two Ivy league championships, two NCAA tournaments and three Ivy League tournament finals, including one championship, in his first five years.
Bates led Princeton to the outright Ivy League championship and into the NCAA tournament in 2012. In his first three seasons, he has now won two Ivy titles and made two NCAA tournament appearances.
Faced with the often-difficult task of replacing a Hall of Fame coach, Bates has coached 14 first-team All-Ivy and 17 All-America selections in his first five years. He has also coached the Ivy League Player of the Year once and the Rookie of the Year three times in five years.
His career record in 15 years as a head coach is 112-101, including 42-30 at Princeton.
Known for his unique offensive style, Bates led Princeton to at least 12 goals per game in both 2014 and 2013, marking the first time since the NCAA championship teams of 1997 and 1998 that Princeton reached at least 12 goals in consecutive seasons.
The 2013 Tigers had one of the highest scoring offenses in Division I and in program history, had two wins over top 10 teams and advanced to the Ivy League tournament final.
Bates took Princeton to a share of the ivy League title, the championship of the first-ever Ivy league tournament and a spot in the NCAA tournament in 2010, his first with the Tigers.
The 2012 Tigers outscored their six Ivy opponents 81-35 while putting together the first 6-0 Ivy record for the team since 2001. Princeton reached double figures in all six Ivy games, marking the sixth time in program history that the team has done so in every Ivy game.
His second season saw Princeton lose 16 players to injury, six of whom missed at least 10 games, including his top two returning scorers.
Before coming to Princeton, Bates spent 10 years as the head coach at Drexel, where he went 70-71, with 14 wins his first three years, 25 his next four and 31 his last three.
Drexel won two Colonial Athletic Association championships in his last three years, and Bates led his team to the program's first-ever win over a No. 1-ranked team when the Dragons knocked off Virginia in 2007.
Bates is a 1990 graduate of Dartmouth, where he played attack and midfield and earned All-Ivy League honors. He was 1-3 as a player against Princeton, including an 11-4 loss in 1990 in the third-to-last game of his college career. Princeton would go on in 1990 to make the program's first NCAA tournament appearance; Princeton has played in 18 of the last 20 NCAA tournaments and won six championships.
Bates played in the North-South all-star game after his senior year and graduated with a degree in psychology before earning a master's in education from North Carolina. He played for eight seasons in the Major Indoor Lacrosse League (now the National Lacrosse League) and won three championships with the Philadelphia Wings while earning all-pro honors in his one season with the Charlotte Cobras.
His coaching career began in 1992, when he started the program at Archbishop Ryan in Philadelphia. He became an assistant coach at Drexel in 1995 and took over as head coach in 2000.
Bates is a native of Katonah, N.Y., and a member of the Hudson Valley Lacrosse Hall of Fame.
He has an 12-year-old son Nicholas who plays soccer, basketball and lacrosse. His wife, Dr. Ann Baldwin Bates, passed away on Nov. 30, 2011, after three bouts with cancer.
|Chris Bates Year-by-Year
|Princeton||2010||11-5||4-2 Ivy (tie/first)|
|Princeton||2011||4-8||2-4 Ivy (tie/fifth)|
|Princeton||2012||11-5||6-0 Ivy (outright champion)|
|Princeton||2013||9-6||3-3 Ivy (fourth)|
|Princeton||2014||7-6||2-4 Ivy (fifth)|
|Total at Princeton||five seasons||42-30||17-13 Ivy|
|Career Total||15 seasons||112-101|