Dodge City (Kan.) Dodge City C.C. cornerback Kennard Banks had an amazing sophomore season that saw him earn first-team All-Jayhawk Conference honors. Despite playing for an 1-8 team, Banks had 42 tackles, 18 assists, three pass breakups, three interceptions and a 50-yard fumble recovery.
But for those around Banks the solid season didn't come as a surprise.
He started as a freshman at Western Michigan, left school after that freshman season and he immediately made a big impact when he got to Dodge City.
"People tried to pick on him this season," Dodge City assistant coach Jared Powers said.
"But that didn't work. People learned the hard way with him. I won't lie to you about what he did on one play. You'll see it on tape. He came up and hit the fullback so hard that it broke the guy's facemask. He's a heck of a player. He's our biggest star, and I think he's the best cover man in the conference."
Kansas State has stepped up and has become the team that's most heavily recruited Banks and after an official visit this weekend to Manhattan it looks like the Wildcats could be on the verge of securing an oral commitment.
"They did offer me this weekend, but I didn't commit yet," Banks, who is 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds, said.
"But I'm really thinking about it. I came home to Florida for Thanksgiving Break and I'm going to talk it over with my family. I didn't want to commit without talking it over with them. I'll probably have a decision here in a week."
Banks said he was impressed with everything he saw this weekend on the visit.
"The best part was watching the game," Banks said. "Even though they lost, those fans were really supportive. They yelled so loud. Listening to the fans, you can tell they really have a passion for their team."
Banks said he also enjoyed his time at the basketball game and eating a ton while he was on campus.
"We ate and ate and ate," Banks said.
"I had some great steaks up there. I got to hand around with the coaches a lot, and I liked talking to them about where I would fit in. Coach Prince said I could come in there and play right away because I was their style of cornerback. He said they need some guys that can come in there and lock things up and play quickly.
"Hopefully that's what I'll do."