Athlete of the Week Q & A: Dalton Banks
Photo credit to Cameron Pollack and the Cornell Daily Sun.
Each week, BRSN sits down for a Q & A session with the Athlete of the Week. This week, we caught up with sophomore Cornell Football quarterback, Dalton Banks, following a terrific Homecoming performance in the Big Red’s 27-13 victory against Yale. Banks completed 23-of-32 passes for 306 yards and two touchdowns.
BRSN: Dalton, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. Through two games this season, you have accounted for five total touchdowns, gone 40-for-56 for 466 yards passing, and had zero turnovers. What has been the key to your success and consistency so far?
DB: I would have to say the key to my success is the supporting cast around me. I’ve got incredible teammates, coaches, and staff members that are the best anyone can ask for, and I can count on them for anything. We have put a lot of work in thus far dating back to the end of the season last year. We knew we had something special in the making, and all of our preparation has paid off so far two weeks into the season. Now, we just have to stay focused on the road ahead of us.
BRSN: With Homecoming on Saturday being your first career home start, how did it feel to come out of the locker room for the first time to hear over 15,000 Big Red fans cheering you on? How did it feel to walk onto the field for your first offensive snap?
DB: The Homecoming crowd was awesome. We love seeing everyone come out and show support for our team. When we have that many people behind us, it really reassures us and makes us want to show out even more. I was excited seeing the crescent packed. We love our fans and all the support.
BRSN: Were you nervous at all to play in front of so many fans during your first home start, or did it act more as motivation and fuel you throughout the game?
DB: The amount of fans was more of a motivational factor than anything. I always like to stay calm and confident going into games, and when I see that many people there to support us, it makes me want to play even harder and for sure raises the team’s level of intensity.
BRSN: You emerged as the starting quarterback this year after seeing no action as a freshman, which is a terrific feat, and you’ve proved that you belong in that role. What did you focus on improving during the offseason, and how were you able to take that step?
DB: Last year, I got to play the role of an observant and really learn a lot about our offense and our team in general. It helped me to develop my understanding of our system, as well as work to establish chemistry with my teammates. We put in a lot of work during the offseason in the weight room, in the meeting rooms, and on the field that helped lay the foundation for our success.
BRSN: What makes Homecoming special to you personally and also to the football team as a whole each season?
DB: Homecoming really is a special time where we can feel the excitement in the air. We love seeing Big Red alumni, family, and friends all supporting us on this weekend year in and year out.
BRSN: What are some of your interests outside of football?
DB: Outside of football, I love to spend time with friends and family, golf, and go fishing.
BRSN: What is one thing that most people don’t know about you that you would like to share with fans of Cornell and, more specifically, Big Red football?
DB: One thing I love to do, but is very hard since they are so far away, is to spend time with my family. I love it whenever they can make the trip up here, or when I have time to go home to Texas.