Defensive lineman Josh Banks wasn’t conspicuous by his absence during spring practices because he’s not quite yet on the average Husky fan’s radar. That should change this fall.
Banks was three-year starter at St. Mary’s High, a Stockton private school where Banks developed a formidable reputation on the D-line. Opposing teams would sometimes change a play at the line-of-scrimmage depending on where Banks was lined up, and he was constantly double-teamed.
As a high school senior, Banks had above-average athleticism, a 4.8+ 40, and a good weight room work ethic. Various scouting sites listed him at between 230 and 250 lbs., a little light for defensive tackle, his natural position. Following his senior season, he garnered all-area first-team honors and accepted a scholarship to the University of Nevada where they expected him to play defensive end.
Academic obstacles – according to Banks, “one science class” – precluded University of Nevada acceptance, and Banks went the junior college route, enrolling in nearby (one mile east) San Joaquin Delta College where he stayed out of football for one year in order to focus on academics.
He subsequently played two seasons at Delta, growing bigger, stronger and a little faster. During his sophomore season, when No. 1 ranked City College of San Francisco (CCSF) played Delta, CCSF had won all previous games by an average victory margin of 53 points, racking up 527 yards per game in total offense. The Delta defense held San Francisco to 16 points primarily due to tough Delta D-line play led by defensive tackle Josh Banks.
His best individual performance was during the previous game against San Jose City College (SJCC) when Banks sacked the SJCC QB four times.
Banks was Defensive MVP of the Valley Conference last season, and subsequently named to the California junior college all-state first-team.
Delta teammate, offensive lineman Kevin Speer, who practiced against Banks daily and played against some formidable competition last season, considered Banks “…the best defensive lineman I’ve ever faced. He gets off the ball really low, so it’s hard to get under him, and he makes [O-linemen] look pretty bad sometimes.”
Banks is now 6’ 3” 285 lbs. with a 4.7 40. The Husky coaches hope to use Banks’ speed and leverage alongside Danny Shelton. Of course, Andrew Hudson, Semisi Tokolahi and others will have something to say about that but it is safe to say that Banks will be very much in the mix at the beginning of fall practice. Should he become a starter, hopefully Banks will make some Pac-12 linemen look “pretty bad” this coming season.