Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel reiterated many of his original comments on the status of linebacker Jeremy Banks during his press conference on Monday.
The longtime starting linebacker for the Vols was mysteriously absent for the game against South Carolina on Saturday. In the aftermath of the loss, Heupel said that Banks “just wasn’t available” for the contest.
Heupel’s tune didn’t change much on Monday.
“We anticipate Jeremy being with us here this week,” Heupel said on Monday. “You know, as far as what transpired and those types of things, at the end of the day, he wasn’t available this Saturday,” Heupel continued on to say.
Tennessee HC comments on Jeremy Banks on the Monday after his South Carolina absence.
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) November 21, 2022
Despite the vague nature of the situation, Banks did put out a statement on his Instagram story on Sunday afternoon.
“Wasn’t about no conflict or nun like that,” Banks said in his Instagram story. “Get Facts bro, coming back harder than ever!”
Shortly after, Banks then shared Tennessee’s Instagram post announcing that Hendon Hooker was done for the season after tearing his ACL. Banks wrote “Shake back” with the praying hands emoji on his post.
Jeremy Banks has been Tennessee’s starting linebacker for seven out of the 10 games prior to South Carolina this season. Banks is also the third-leading tackler on the team with 46.
“JB, he’s a guy of high energy,” Tennessee linebacker Aaron Beasley said about Banks and the South Carolina game on Monday. “We would love to have him out there with us. But at the end of the day, the outside stuff, it’s not supposed to affect us. We got to go out there, do our job, play the game how we know we can play it. Saturday we just didn’t do that.”
Tennessee will take on Vanderbilt this Saturday night in Nashville in the final game of the 2022 regular season.