• Coach Carroll invites Banks to tryout with Seahawks


    After wrongly being convicted of rape, a former high school football player was invited to pursue his dream Thursday of playing professional football.


    Brian Banks got the opportunity to try out with the Seattle Seahawks after head coach Pete Carroll offered him the chance.


    KIRO 7 Eyewitness News reporter Chris Legeros talked with Banks at the Seahawks training facility about his remarkable story.


    “Amazing; this is by far the second-best day of my life,” Banks said.


    According to Banks, the best day of his life happened two weeks ago, when a Los Angeles judge overturned his conviction for rape, which sent him to prison for more than five years. He spent four more years on parole as a registered sex offender.


    During his trial workout, Banks wore a sweatshirt printed with "XONR8."


    “This has been my symbol of freedom, and I carry it wherever I go,” said Banks. He holds no bitterness towards the woman who falsely accused him in high school.


    “Not at all, look where I am," Banks laughed. "Look where I am today. I thank God for this."


    Coach Carroll was trying to recruit Banks to play college football for the University of Southern California. Carroll offered the chance to try out for the Seahawks.


    “He deserved a chance,” Carroll said. “Given other circumstances, he would have earned it in front of our eyes.”


    Carroll said Banks moves well, is quick and shows coordination. He admitted Banks looks like a guy who hasn’t trained in the same fashion as a professional player, but invited him to come back next week to work out with the team.


    “God is good. I got offered to come back again to display my talents,” Banks said.


    If Banks doesn’t make the roster for the Seahawks or another team, he said he will be working on a documentary about his life.


    “The message of hope, the message of faith, of familyhood, determination, and just remaining positive no matter the situation you’re going through,” Banks said.


    According to Carroll, Banks is a living testament.


    Carroll said, “If you keep hanging and you’re tough, and you don’t give up on your dreams, you can make things come to life.”


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