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Nevada Football names Freddie Banks as defensive backs coach

NCAA Football: Nevada at Boise State Brian Losness-USA TODAY Sports

Nevada football is bringing in Freddie Banks as the defensive backs coach, head coach Jay Norvell announced today.

“Freddie has a long history with (new Nevada defensive coordinator) Brian Ward and he’s done a great job at Stephen F. Austin teaching the coverage techniques we want to employ,” Norvell said. “He is an excellent recruiter and a great developer of corners.”

Banks spent the last two seasons as the defensive backs coach at the FCS level for Stephen F. Austin. He also served as the recruiting coordinator for the Lumberjacks.

The Lumberjacks sported a 131.27 pass efficiency defense, only trailing Sam Houston State (106.07) for the best in the Southland Conference last season. Stephen F. Austin ranked No. 107 in the FCS in pass defense (262.4 ypg) and T-66 in interceptions (10). In 2018, the Lumberjacks ranked second in the conference and No. 82 nationally in pass defense (228.9 ypg).

Previously, he spent three seasons at Midwestern State — a Division-II school in Wichita Falls, Texas. Banks served as the defensive backs and recruiting coordinator.

In his first season at Midwestern State in 2015, the program ranked second in the Lone Star conference and No. 57 nationally in pass defense (201.9 ypg). In that same seasons, the Mustangs finished fourth in the conference in interceptions (11) and fifth in pass efficiency defense (126.33).

In 2016, they ranked second in the conference — No. 37 nationally — in passing defense (190.1 ypg). They ranked T-67 in Division-II in interceptions (11) and No. 104 in pass efficiency defense (132.24).

Midwestern State went 26-6 (.813) in Banks’ tenure. The program made back-to-back Division-II playoff appearances in 2016 and 2017, capped-off by a 10-1 record with a 8-0 conference record in Banks’ final season in 2017.

The 31-year-old, who played a cornerback in college, played under newly hired defensive coordinator Brian Ward at North Dakota State for one season when Ward coached defensive backs.

Prior to his stint at Midwestern State, Banks was the defensive coordinator at Livonia High School (La.) in 2015. He also spent two seasons (2013 and 2014) as the defensive backs/video coordinator at Nicholls and two seasons (2011 and 2012) as an assistant coach with Minnesota State-Moorhead.

“I want to say thank you to Coach Norvell and Coach Ward for this amazing opportunity to be part of the Nevada football program,” Banks said. “There are high expectations here in Reno and we are going to exceed them. I can’t wait to get started.”