Gore’s James Bane – Athelte Spotlight Presented by Gore Green Country Drug

By Nick Hampton / Photo by Vickie Tincher @vypelady

As Pirate coach Brandon Tyler took a look at his football team last spring, he saw a lot of positives. But one thing that was evident was a lack of offensive linemen for the upcoming season. So, he turned to his senior-to-be tight end James Bane to move from the outside into the interior line.

“I was a little disappointed at first because I really enjoyed playing tight end. But in the end, I want to win, so if changing positions will help, I’m okay with that,” said the burly 6-1, 195-pound Bane who also plays defensive end.

Tyler knows Bane well because Bane started playing football in the seventh grade where in grew up in Vian and where Tyler was the Wolverines head coach at the time.

“I came into the locker room that first day and they asked if I played football and I said ‘Yeah-I guess.”

Having been around Bane for most of the last six years, Tyler knew last spring that he was the man for the job.

“He’s a great team player as evidenced by his willingness to change positions. He’s versatile as he’s become our punter after our starter got hurt. He’s an excellent athlete and plays baseball and basketball as well as football,” said Tyler. “I just can’t say enough good things about the way he’s sacrificed for the good of the team, his work ethic and his desire to win.”

Even though he was used to blocking on the line as the tight end, adjusting to life as a down lineman was a little difficult at first according to Bane.

“It was a little tough at first because at tight end you really have just one or two blocks to worry about but as an inside lineman you have run blocking, pass blocking, pulling to lead a runner and lots of different things,’ said Bane.

He is a member of the National Honor Society and is active in FFA where, in a strange twist, the big burly lineman shows lambs. He’s also got some definite goals that he’s set for athletics in this his senior year.

“In football, I want to win a district title and have a deep playoff run. In basketball, we haven’t had a strong program here so I’d like to at least see us have a winning season and in baseball I want to get some college looks because that’s my favorite sport.”

He’s already had some baseball recruiting interest from a small college in Minnesota and hopes this spring he’ll be able to help the Pirates in baseball and draw some attention from area colleges as well.

The football season is winding down and the Pirates are on target to achieving Bane’s goal of winning a district title though it will probably come down to a week 10 battle with Sallisaw Central. “They’ve beaten us the last two years so I hope this is the year we can get over the hump and win it,” said Tyler.