James Banks’ gracious attitude regarding NCAA violations

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Georgia Tech head coach Josh Pastner, James Bank and Michael Devoe address the media Oct. 9, 2019. (ACC)

If he so chose, Georgia Tech center James Banks would have reason to be bitter with former Yellow Jackets Josh Okogie and Tadric Jackson for accepting impermissible benefits from Ron Bell, the former Tech booster and friend of coach Josh Pastner.

Their decision to accept gifts from Bell (including a trip to visit him in Arizona) were among violations that contributed to the postseason ban levied by the NCAA's infractions committee. Barring a successful appeal, it will keep Banks from having a chance to play in the NCAA tournament. Banks, a senior, went to the tournament in 2018 when he was a backup center at Texas, but did not play.

Speaking Tuesday at the ACC’s Operation Basketball media day, Banks held only grace for the former Jackets.

“If you judge people by the worst decision they made, I don’t think anybody would be a good person,” Banks said. “It was a lack of judgement. They fumbled the bag once. It’s definitely not my place to attack them. I’ve made mistakes; I’ve made plenty of them. So I’m just going to chalk that up to that. It happened, it’s over with.”

Banks also said Tuesday that he was hoping that Tech will win an appeal with the NCAA to overturn the postseason ban.