The Rose Bowl will likely be Sevyn Banks’ last game as a Buckeye, but he hasn’t made a final decision yet.
During an interview with Eleven Warriors on Saturday, Banks said Ohio State’s season-ending game against Utah “should be” the last game he plays for the Buckeyes, though he wasn’t quite ready to confirm that it will be yet.
Under normal circumstances, that wouldn’t be Banks’ decision to make. A senior who has played in at least six games in all four of his seasons at Ohio State, Banks is in what would normally be his final year of eligibility. Because the NCAA gave all players an additional year of eligibility last season, though, Banks could choose to return for a fifth year if he wants to – and he hasn’t completely ruled out that possibility yet.
“I’m not sure yet, but I’ll definitely let you guys know,” Banks said after participating in an autograph signing with Ohio State teammates Steele Chambers, Ronnie Hickman, Miyan Williams and Tyleik Williams at Conrads.
It’s also possible that Banks has already played his final game as a Buckeye, as he said he hasn’t yet made a final decision on whether he’ll play in the Rose Bowl.
“I’m gonna see,” Banks said. “I’m not sure.”
That said, it is important to Banks for Ohio State to get a win in Pasadena. After losing their final game of the regular season against Michigan, which Banks was unable to play in due to injury, he says the Buckeyes need to get a victory over the Utes to get back on track – and that will be especially important to him if it ends up being his last game in scarlet and gray.
“We need this one to build momentum back and get a win under our belt because our seniors need to leave out the right way,” Banks said. “It’s definitely a mandatory for me in my book to go out with a W.”
After starting all eight games for Ohio State in 2020, Banks has been in and out of the lineup this season, starting six times. That’s partially because he’s missed four games with injuries but also because of the emergence of Denzel Burke, who started all 12 regular-season games, and Cameron Brown, who made five regular-season starts.
Even though that’s led to reduced playing time for Banks, he says he’s enjoyed being in a rotation with them.
“It’s been a great opportunity to get to know my teammates, get to know them in and out, and just be a part of BIA really, because it’s special,” Banks said. “A lot of college teams don’t have our type of room in the country. And it’s good to be a part of this team.”
If Banks, who is graduating from Ohio State on Sunday, chooses to move on after the Rose Bowl and enter the 2022 NFL draft, he believes Ohio State’s cornerback room will remain in good hands, not only with Burke and Brown both returning but also with the emergence of Jordan Hancock and Jakailin Johnson, who could be in line to play bigger roles next season after only playing occasionally as true freshmen.
“Them some young dogs right there,” Banks said. “I love them. They’re going to step up to the plate when their time comes. Y’all gonna see it. Buckeye Nation’s gonna see.”
In the next two weeks, Banks will have to make a final decision on whether he should play in the Rose Bowl and whether he should play one more season at Ohio State or take his shot at playing professionally. Regardless of what he does next, though, Banks is confident the Buckeyes will respond the right way after losing to the Wolverines – and he’s doing what he can while he’s still there to help the team do so.
“Just getting better, coaching up my teammates, whatever I have to do, to interact with us and just be there,” Banks said. “We’ve just put our heads down and just grinded, really. We can’t dwell on the past, really. We gotta keep going.”
Eleven Warriors also caught up with Miyan Williams before Saturday’s signing, and you can watch the video below to hear what he had to say about how this season has gone for him, his close friendship with C.J. Stroud and how the Buckeyes have responded to the Michigan loss.