We continue the Better Know a Buckeye series with its 6th installment in 2018. Here, we profile Sevyn Banks, a cornerback from Orlando.
- Size: 6-1/190
- Position: CB
- Hometown: Orlando, FL
- School: Jones
- 247 Composite: ★★★★
- National Ranking: 221
- Position Ranking: 23 (CB)
- State Ranking: 41 (FL)
- Under Armour All-American
- The Opening Finals
Banks is another unlikely addition to Ohio State's recruiting class. His recruitment was stunted by an ACL tear in 2016 but Ohio State eventually offered at the end of January. He gave few indications Ohio State was a serious factor in his recruitment before he surprised all recruiting insiders with an April 26, 2017 commitment to the Buckeyes.
I retell this story below. I start first with his recruitment and how Ohio State positioned itself against Oklahoma following its demolition of the Sooners early in the 2016 season. I discuss the rationale for his commitment, which held notwithstanding a strong push from Lincoln Riley who hoped to capitalize on Oklahoma returning the favor in the Horseshoe last season. Thereafter, I provide a scouting report of a promising safety prospect with an incredible frame and athleticism. I conclude that we can expect to see Proctor on special teams in 2018 and offer some highlight film to watch at the end of the feature.
Sevyn Banks is another unlikely entry into Ohio State's 2018 recruiting class. He checks all the boxes for what Ohio State wants to bring to the program and Ohio State is no stranger to luring top talent from Florida to Columbus. His promise for college football was apparent even though he lost most of his junior year to an ACL tear.
However, Sevyn Banks openly expressed that Florida was his dream school. His older brother, Marcell Harris, just finished a collegiate career there. Harris' biological father was also a Gator. He held a Florida offer for almost a week in January 2017 before Ohio State extended a scholarship offer of its own. It still seemed unlikely that Banks would end up anywhere other than Gainesville.
More Sevyn Banks at 11W
This seemed to be the story that would unfold through the spring. Banks visited Gainesville for Florida's junior day and had a great time on campus. He returned in April for Florida's spring game and gave assurances that Florida was where he wanted to be.
Only Florida State seemed to be challenging the Gators for his pledge. Banks visited Florida State for its junior day last February and left with a scholarship offer. Banks expressed some excitement with the offer and expressed a genuine interest in the Seminoles program. He still seemed to favor the Gators; indeed, his crystal ball pledges were unanimous in favor of the Gators before his commitment. However, Florida State seemed to at least be offering a respectable challenge for Banks' commitment.
Banks seemed set on staying in Florida for college. In all likelihood, he was en route to Gainesville to play for the Gators. Few things suggested that Ohio State was seriously in the mix. Banks expressed an interest in going to Columbus to see the program for itself and even found a way to make the trip for Ohio State's spring game in April.
However, nothing Banks said indicated a commitment could be forthcoming. The most he said publicly about Ohio State was that he wanted to see it. He gave no indication they were a serious threat to get his commitment. That visit came and went on the weekend of April 15-16 with no indication that a decision was forthcoming.
It made the commitment he gave more than a week later that much more astonishing.
Sevyn Banks committed to Ohio State on April 26, 2017 as the 6th commitment of what would become its full 2018 recruiting class. He chose Ohio State over several offers from major ACC and SEC programs but Florida and Florida State were his other main choices.
It left recruitniks scrambling for an explanation as the decision caught everyone off-guard. The decision came when Tony Alfords and Kerry Coombs flew to Orlando to watch Banks practice. Both Ohio State assistants were also caught off guard by the commitment.
Banks' comments about Ohio State afterward provide a window into why he opted for Ohio State over staying in-state for college. The best pitch from the program was the caliber of the coaching staff. Some recruits respond differently to various personality types. Banks, for his own reasons, appreciated how blunt Ohio State's coaches were. The cordiality was shared across all Ohio State assistants that Banks met. Coombs obviously had a unique energy that will be hard to replace. However, Banks earnestly liked how blunt and no-nonsense Meyer was. It was that combination of blunt and genuine that convinced Banks that he wanted to play for this coaching staff.
He also expressed that Ohio State's fans wowed him at the spring game. More than 80,000 fans arrived at Ohio Stadium for the spring game, which left an impression on Banks that Ohio State was where he needed to be. He signed with Ohio State in December and has been enrolled since January.
FLOH #BIA gets a good one! Welcome to the Buckeye family, @BanksNiko!— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) December 20, 2017
Make sure to follow us on Snapchat at ohiostate-fb as Sevyn takes over all morning!#GoBucks #Supreme18 #NSD18 pic.twitter.com/HmFFoqyJay
WHERE HE EXCELS
Banks was a dynamic two-way player in high school, showcasing the kind of athleticism that would allow him to thrive once he commits himself to a single position.
He has the ideal frame for a suffocating cornerback. 6-1 and 180 pounds is not unusually large for a cornerback but it is larger than the typical player at that position. This gives him the opportunity to match up with bigger wide receivers he may see at the collegiate level.
He has great eyes for a cornerback. A fair bit of his film will highlight him seeing the field and the play develop and breaking it up.
Banks is also a willing tackler as well. Most high school football is run-intensive and Banks shows no shyness in flying to the ball-carrier.
Finally, Banks shows some promise on special teams as a returner. He could conceivably contribute in the return game as he matures at Ohio State.
MUST WORK ON
I see two things here that ultimately become one thing if you wanted to collapse one of the categories because they'll communicate the same thing. Basically, Banks is a raw prospect that lost some of his development to that ACL tear in 2016.
You'll see it in two ways. First, his technique in coverage is raw. Most of what you'll see features Banks is playing off-man and using his athleticism to close on plays. You won't see a lot of film of Banks riding a cornerback in coverage nor will you see much to suggest Banks is where he needs to be on footwork and his hip-swivel. He can get there but consider Banks a "blank slate" right now.
Related, his tackling form is raw and Banks could better show an ability to fight off blocks. That'll be a big part of the job should he see the field at Ohio State.
Ohio State does not want for cornerbacks and Banks has some major technique issues that suggest he's probably a two-year project. He's currently enrolled which is helping him toward that end. However, my best guess is Banks is a redshirt in 2018. He has the ideal frame and athleticism for special teams duties but a redshirt still seems in order.
Here are junior-year highlights of Sevyn Banks.