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Former East Webster football player Johnthan Banks is accustomed to being the center of attention on the football field.
In high school, Banks was the best athlete on the field most Friday nights. At Mississippi State, heās one of the most gifted defensive backs in the nation.
His prowess on the field has landed him on a variety of preseason watch lists and deservingly so.
However, today in Hoover, Ala., Banks steps into a new spotlight at Southeastern Conference Media Days.
āIāve heard Media Day can be stressful, a lot of weird questions,ā said Banks. āIām actually looking forward to it. Itās something I wanted to do. Iām glad I got the respect of coach (Dan) Mullen and others to pick me. I feel like Iām one of the captains on the team so itās an honor to be picked to go to media days.ā
While making the trip to Birmingham to represent his team is an honor, Banks vows not to let the attention affect his performance.
āI just try to be myself," Banks said. "(I want to) keep doing the things that got me the hype and donāt listen to it. Itās so hard not to pay attention to all the stuff coming at you, but I try to be humble and keep myself around my teammates and just try to stay where Iāve been.ā
Banks feels his teammates are following his lead of staying humble and putting in the work.
āThis is the hardest-working team Iāve ever been around,ā said Banks. āYou can tell because guys coming back (for the second summer semester) take it like they just got off a break. I had guys texting me saying they didnāt want to take off. They were ready to go back now and come back for classes. (There are) guys trying to get in the weightroom, (and) trying to go run.ā
As for what he expects to see this season from the MSU secondary, one big headache for the coaches.
āThe coaches are going to have their hands full trying to put everybody on the field," Banks said with a smile. "We have a lot of athletes back there. Depth is something we havenāt had in the past. I can remember when we played Arkansas here, I played 90-something plays that one game, but now that weāve got (Jamerson) Love and (Taveze) Calhoun and (Darius) Slay, it's going to make our team just so much better. Iām not trying to brag, but I'm going to be shocked if we donāt have the No. 1 secondary in the nation.ā
Banks will be joined in Hoover by quarterback Tyler Russell and offensive guard Gabe Jackson. The trio will step into the spotlight along side Mullen at 8:30 a.m. You can follow the news coming out of SEC Media Days by checking in online at www.sdnmsu.wordpress.com.View more articles in: