Banks On Thin Ice

James Banks' career as a University of Tennessee football player may be hanging by a thread.

Banks was cited in the wee hours last Friday morning for underage consumption of alcohol and violating Knoxville's noise ordinance when police responded to a noisy crowd on ''The Strip'' near campus. These are minor offenses but they could prove costly for Banks, given his recent history of undisciplined behavior.

When police tried to quiet and disperse the crowd, James Banks reportedly reacted by turning up the volume on his car radio. This led to him being cited by police.

James Banks has started at both quarterback and receiver for the Vols. He was Indiana's high school defensive player of the year as a senior at Ben Davis High of Indianapolis and has been preparing for a shot in a Vol secondary that lost three starters from 2003.

He was suspended for the Peach Bowl last December for a violation of team rules, then suspended for most of spring practice for the same reason. Recent reports suggested he was avoiding trouble and on track to rejoin the team in time for the opening of preseason drills in August.

Head coach Phillip Fulmer said he would announce a decision on Banks' future with the Vols after meeting with him sometime today.


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