Welcome home, fellow Gator.

The Gator Nation's oldest and most active insider community
Join today!

Support a Legendary Gator

Discussion in 'RayGator's Swamp Gas' started by finorman, Apr 15, 2019.

  1. finorman

    finorman GC Legend

    519
    89
    268
    Jan 30, 2009
    Orlando
    I just wanted to give some support and a shout out to James Bates, whom I finally got an opportunity to meet during Saturday's Orange and Blue Game (despite the fact that I was at UF in '96).

    James was set up displaying his artwork on University Ave, and my family and I bought some of his art, and had the chance to meet his family. His kids are smart, articulate, super polite and there to support their dad, as was his wife. They have James' smile, and I suspect his sense of humor. Btw, James is every bit the down to earth nice guy he seems to be on TV and YouTube, he even signed my kids T-shirt.

    My goal in posting this information is twofold. First, if you haven't been turned onto James' art, I would encourage you to check out his website. I don't want to violate any GC rules by posting a link, but if you use your google machine by typing James Bates art, you are sure to find it. His work is a combination of modern cubism, mixed with pop culture, humor and the themes run from UF, to the SEC and beyond. There is a variety of mediums to include canvas, wood, prints, T-shirts, greeting cards, stickers and more. (I have no financial relationship with James, I'm just an admirer of his work)

    Secondly, I asked James if he was doing any broadcasting for UF, and while he says he teaches a class at UF, his dream would be to become more involved. I was hoping we might plant the idea in GC of having James contribute in some capacity, with the hope that one day it might lead to something in the broadcast booth for the Gators. He has the personality that would definitely make me interested in watching games besides football, and they guy has an interesting perspective on life.

    Go Gata
     
    • Like x 15
    • Agree x 1
    • Winner x 1
    • Informative x 1
    • Best Post Ever x 1
  2. ThePlayer

    ThePlayer VIP Member

    31,403
    2,782
    1,823
    Apr 3, 2007
    One of my all-time favorite Gators.
    Batsy is one successful, multi-talented Dude.

    [​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 5
    • Winner Winner x 1
  3. ThePlayer

    ThePlayer VIP Member

    31,403
    2,782
    1,823
    Apr 3, 2007
    [​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. ThePlayer

    ThePlayer VIP Member

    31,403
    2,782
    1,823
    Apr 3, 2007
    [​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 3
  5. The_RH_Factor

    The_RH_Factor GC Hall of Fame

    1,018
    114
    223
    Aug 11, 2010
    I got to meet him one time when he spoke at the local Gator Club.

    Saw his glass-encased box with four SEC Championship rings in each corner and national championship ring in the middle.

    Cool
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  6. INGATORSWETRUST

    INGATORSWETRUST GC Hall of Fame

    16,917
    940
    808
    Apr 8, 2007
    Florida
    • Like Like x 4
    • Fistbump/Thanks! Fistbump/Thanks! x 1
  7. 62gator

    62gator GC Hall of Fame

    4,986
    1,181
    483
    Dec 4, 2007
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    Still surprised he didn’t go further in his tv broadcasting career. He’s a sharp witty guy who speaks well, the polar opposite of the doofus clown Kanell. Batsy also does by far the best HBC impression. His art is very unique and creative. Just an all around great guy!
     
    • Agree Agree x 5
    • Like Like x 1
  8. GatorStu1

    GatorStu1 Senior

    270
    106
    333
    May 9, 2015
    My family became really good friends with James during his playing days @ UF. He truly befriended my oldest son (who is now 30, OUCH!!!!!!!!) during James senior season.
    It started after a home game and we were waiting for a table at Outback and my son (Greg) spotted James and his girlfriend at one of those small tables that kind of circled their bar. Anyway, Greg asked if he could ask James for an autograph. My wife and I said yes, but please do not bug him too much. He is eating dinner with his GF and does not want to be bothered. Well, he walks over and 20 minutes later comes back with his menu signed. When we got our table I walked over to apologize and James and his GF said no problem and said they enjoyed talking to him.
    Next home game we are walking towards Outback for dinner and we hear someone yelling......... "Hey Greg!!!!!!!!!!", and sure enough it is James driving a car with his Dad Jim Bates sitting "gun". Well, James spends at least 10 minutes talking with Greg asking how school is going and what sports he likes, which was great for me because I was a HUGE fan of Jim Bates when he was DC for the Gators in 1990 (awesome attacking D).
    End of season we lose the FSU game 24-21 and everyone in our family is totally depressed. Greg says "I bet James feels worse than us, I am going to write him a letter and tell not to worry. The Gators are still great and he is still great and we can still win the National Championship". The letter goes in the mail Monday and on Thursday a Next Day package arrives for Greg with a Gator Football autographed by James Bates and a note thanking him for thinking about him after the FSU game.
    We lived in Alpharetta, Georgia at the time so we were able to go the SEC Championship game and rushed down to the Gator tunnel after the game and spoke with James (he recognized us right off the bat and called us by name and we spend 10-15 minutes talking with him).
    Finally, in February we drove down to Gainesville to catch a Gator BB game and shop for NC gear and sure enough spotted James at Sports Authority and chatted for at least another half hour. If you remember the picture that was taken with Coach, Danny, Lawrence Wright and James (there was another person, but I can't think of him) with the Championship Trophy, James' looks pretty rough and his eyes are almost shut. I asked him about it and he said he got back from Bourbon Street about 30 minutes before the photo was scheduled, jumped in the shower (still drunk) and got there just in time for the photo............
    Sorry for the length of this post, but I thought it might show that the OP is correct, James Bates is a REALLY nice person and GREAT Gator.
     
    • Like Like x 11
    • Winner Winner x 3
    • Informative Informative x 1
  9. finorman

    finorman GC Legend

    519
    89
    268
    Jan 30, 2009
    Orlando
    GatorRanger7, who I think lives in Tn, shared a similar story. James gave his son a ball cap that made him a forever fan.

    And an atta’ boy to your son for having the nerve to start a conversation with James.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Fistbump/Thanks! Fistbump/Thanks! x 1
  10. sierragator

    sierragator GC Hall of Fame

    8,414
    453
    358
    Apr 8, 2007
    I have always admired Bates. A Gator Great for sure!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. hawaiigator

    hawaiigator All American

    324
    88
    158
    Sep 9, 2018
    See, I don’t want to see him in the booth unless it’s strictly for the Gators. You can’t really have homers starting out in the booth these days, they all seem to keep it almost neutral with a little bit of favoritism. The ones that are homers these days are the ones that have already been in the biz for a long time (maybe I’m wrong). Would he be great...yes, do I want.....nope
     
  12. finorman

    finorman GC Legend

    519
    89
    268
    Jan 30, 2009
    Orlando
    I hadn't realized that Tate Casey replaced Brady Ackerman,
    I agree with the premise, but I love hearing Mick and Travis call the game, and although I knew Brady left for coaching I wasn't aware that Tate Casey had replaced him. It doesn't seem like there is a place for James. I'd love to hear his opinions though... maybe a pregame or halftime show? Post game analysis on a podcast?
     
  13. ThePlayer

    ThePlayer VIP Member

    31,403
    2,782
    1,823
    Apr 3, 2007
  14. RayGator

    RayGator Moderator VIP Member

    56,735
    4,600
    2,118
    Apr 3, 2007
    Lakeland, Florida USA.
    He was our guest speaker at one of our Kickoff Parties for the Polk County Gator Club In Lakeland.
     
  15. BA69MA72

    BA69MA72 GC Legend

    617
    131
    288
    Apr 8, 2007
    James and Tina were students of mine and James now teaches for me and another department. Good people, and if you don’t know, Tina has been Florida High School swimming coach of the year at least once, and maybe twice
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Informative Informative x 2
  16. rball1313

    rball1313 Premium Member

    424
    89
    298
    Apr 3, 2007
    great
     
  17. rball1313

    rball1313 Premium Member

    424
    89
    298
    Apr 3, 2007
    great



    Awesome story, thanks for sharing!
     
  18. GatorStu1

    GatorStu1 Senior

    270
    106
    333
    May 9, 2015
    rball;

    You are welcome.