He plans to major in physics and engineering, for which Banker also received a scholarship.
“I’m proud these kids can come see him because he did it the right way,” Smith said. “He worked for everything he’s earned. In the classroom, he’s a great student-athlete.
“At UNI he was just talking about walking on, but the 400 hurdles gave him that opportunity. I like that these other kids can come see that hard work pay off.”
Smith added that UNI was unaware that this was Banker’s first season in hurdles. Because of that, he believes the Panthers can look forward to a lot of upside.
“You’ve got to think he’ll go up from here,” Smith said. “I think at UNI they didn’t really have a low hurdler, so he’ll be filling a spot for them.”
Banker’s signing came a day before the Clinton track team traveled to Des Moines. He will join teammates in both individual and relay events. With the signing out of the way, he’s turned his attention to wrapping up his high school career.
“I’m hoping to continue to get better and drop time. At state I’m hoping to get a medal,” Banker said.