Former FDA students sign college commitments

Published 5:13 pm Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Special to the Advocate

On the recent 2015 National Signing Day, two Greenville natives signed commitments to continue their education and athletic careers at the next level.

Jack Bates and Daniel Hall Autrey, both former students at Fort Dale Academy, were two of eight seniors at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Va., to sign commitments to play football next year at the collegiate level.

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Bates, son of David and Jane McKinley of Greenville and Chip and Lynn Bates of Andalusia, is Boston-bound.

The highly-recruited 6-foot-9-inch, 275-pound Bates chose Harvard University over 13 other schools including the University of Connecticut, University of Nevada, Eastern Carolina, Temple, Yale, and Brown.

Bates was a two-year standout at offensive tackle for an Episcopal offense that averaged almost 300 yards rushing per game.

Bates also received substantial playing time as a defensive tackle for the 7-2 Episcopal Maroon, coached by Panos Voulgaris and a member of the highly competitive Virginia Independent Athletic Conference.

He was honored for his outstanding season and was selected first team all-IAC.  Bates also was chosen as an honorable mention all-state player in Virginia.

Autrey, son of Julie and Daniel Autrey of Greenville, was a three-year starter at cornerback for Episcopal.

Autrey is also the grandson of the late, legendary Greenville-area coach Jim Autrey.

Autrey chose to continue his academic and football career at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn.

During his time at Episcopal, Autrey not only played cornerback, but also saw action at quarterback and wide receiver.

Despite missing the final two games to an arm injury, Autrey led the Episcopal team in interceptions with five picks.

He returned two of those interceptions for touchdowns.

Additionally, the opportunistic Autrey was in on 51 tackles and was credited with 14 pass breakups for the season.  For his gridiron contributions, he was selected second team all-IAC cornerback.

Both Bates and Autrey will graduate from Episcopal High School in May.

Episcopal High School, a 100 percent residential school, was founded in 1839 and is located on a 130 acre campus in Alexandria, 10 minutes from Washington, DC.