After two seasons in Austin, Texas Longhorns forward James Banks III has elected to transfer, the school announced on Wednesday. Fellow 2016 classmate Jacob Young, a guard, also left the program in recent days, and Eric Davis Jr. turned pro on Wednesday, as well.
“I appreciate all of James’ work and effort over the past two years,” head coach Shaka Smart said. “We wish James and his family all the best moving forward.”
A 6’10, 230-pounder, Banks was recruited as a defender, rebounder, and rim protector with the hope that he would eventually emerge as a player with some type of offensive game. At Texas, that never happened for the former top-10 center nationally.
Landing Jarrett Allen in the 2016 class marginalized Banks as a freshman, when he averaged 1.7 points per game in 12.6 minutes per contest. Then the addition of Mohamed Bamba this season, as well as Dylan Osetkowski and Jericho Sims, reduced the minutes that Banks played from 397 to 95.
Banks didn’t see action in 20 games and only reached 10 minutes of playing time in one game after November, averaging 1.6 points and 1.7 rebounds per game overall.
Texas has now had three players to transfer over the last two seasons, with Andrew Jones the only remaining member of the four-man 2016 recruiting class.