Get Dori in your inbox! Sign up for the daily Dori Monson email newsletter >
Listen to Dori Monson weekdays on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM
Dori Monson

Pete Carroll impressed Brian Banks isn't bitter after exoneration

cedargrove

Brian Banks, center, reacts with his mother, Leomia Myers and father, Jonathan Banks, outside court after his rape conviction was dismissed Thursday May 24, 2012 in Long Beach, Calif. Banks, a former Long Beach high school football star and prized college recruit who served more than five years in prison for a rape he did not commit had his conviction overturned Thursday with his accuser recanting her story( AP Photo/Nick Ut)

Back when Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll was the coach at USC, he had brought in a high school junior during recruitment, named Brian Banks.

When Banks got into some legal trouble and didn't return for his senior year of high school, Carroll said they lost track of him. The USC coaches hadn't gotten to the "heart" of recruiting and no one was able to recall Banks' "no contest plea."

"We had lost hope for him," Carroll told 97.3 KIRO FM's Dori Monson Show.

Ten years ago, Banks pleaded no contest on the advice of a lawyer after a childhood friend falsely accused him of attacking her on their high school campus. A judge threw out the conviction that sent Banks to prison for more than five years.

When Banks was exonerated, Carroll was eager to give him a second chance.

"It's been so extraordinarily unfortunate for him," Carroll said. "I can't promise him anything - I've told him that."

The pair have talked three or four times on the phone already; Banks recounted his experience facing punishment for the crime he didn't commit, and what he's been doing since.

Carroll described him as sharp and competitive: Two traits that might make for a great tryout with the Seahawks. Still, it's a long shot for Banks. He was unable to play college football, making it more difficult to make the cut for a professional team.

Banks isn't bitter about his experiences though, and that impressed the Seahawks coach. Carroll said they're looking for someone with talent - and that athlete could be Banks.

Despite the Seahawks canceling their OTA scheduled for June 7, Carroll confirmed that Banks will still be on the field at practice.

Alyssa Kleven, MyNorthwest.com Editor
Alyssa Kleven is an editor and content producer at MyNorthwest.com. She enjoys doting over her adorable dachshund Winnie - named for Arcade Fire front-man Win Butler.
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus


In the community
Do you know a student who stands out in the classroom, school and community?
Help make their dreams come true by nominating them for a $1,000 scholarship and a chance to earn a $10,000 Grand Prize. Brought to you by KIRO Radio and Comprehensive Wealth Management.

Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.