West Virginia State Associate Professor Named to High School Sports Hall of Fame

Contact: Kimberly Osborne
(304) 766-3363
July 30, 2014

West Virginia State Associate Professor Named to High School Sports Hall of Fame
INSTITUTE, W.Va. – A long-time West Virginia State University (WVSU) associate professor and one time Yellow Jacket football coach has been inducted into the Newton Vocational/N.H. Pilate High School Sports Hall of Fame in Newton, Miss.

Oree Banks, associate professor of Health and Human Performance, was honored by his former high school at a ceremony earlier this month in Newton.

“It was wonderful to see some of my former classmates,” said Banks, who went on to play college football at Kansas State University after graduating high school in 1951. “And to be honored by my first educational institution gave me quite a feeling of accomplishment.”

Banks said that the honor bestowed by his high school was in recognition not only of his athletic accomplishments there, but of his long coaching career.

Following his college playing days, Banks began his coaching career at Coahoma Community College where he served as an instructor, head football coach and athletic director from 1960 through 1963. In four seasons at Coahoma Community College, Banks’s Tigers posted a record of 27-7-1 and were either champions or co-champions of the Southern Intercollegiate Conference each year.

Following the Tiger’s successful 1963 season, a call came for Banks to join the coaching staff of legendary Coach Eddie Robinson at Grambling State University. Banks served on the Grambling State University coaching staff for two years until he was named the head coach of South Carolina State. Banks coached for eight years at South Carolina State compiling a record of 44-27-2.

After leaving South Carolina State, Banks served as an assistant coach at the University of South Carolina, the University of Virginia and the University of Wisconsin before being named the head football coach at WVSU in 1977.

Banks came to WVSU as both an associate professor and head football coach. He wore both hats until after the 1983 football season. Since that time he has worked as an associate professor of Health and Human Performance.

Banks was previously named to the NAIA Hall of Fame in 1995 and to the WVSU “W” Club Sports Hall of Fame in 2008. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Coahoma Community College in 2013 as well as the state of Mississippi Community College Foundation Sports Hall of Fame.
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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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