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Brian Banks doesn’t hold a grudge, does still have NFL hopes

Brian Banks AP

Brian Banks, the promising football prospect who lost his scholarship at USC and lost five years of his life when a classmate falsely accused him of rape, says he’s moving on with his life and still hoping to make a run at an NFL career.

The subject of a 60 Minutes profile that will air on Sunday, Banks says he has forgiven his accuser and isn’t looking for her to be punished in any way. Asked if he wants to see charges brought against his accuser, Wanetta Gibson, Banks answered, “No, None whatsoever. My main focus has just been on me.”

Banks may not want to see Gibson punished, but that doesn’t mean she shouldn’t be. In addition to the harm she brought to Banks, false claims like hers can contribute to an environment in which people who really are raped fear coming forward because they’re worried that they’ll be accused of lying. Gibson also got $750,000 from the taxpayers of Long Beach, California, where the school district settled a lawsuit she brought, in which she alleged that the school was culpable for failing to protect her from Banks.

However, the Los Angeles Times reported that prosecutors believe a case against Gibson would be hard to prosecute, and that Gibson has already run out of the settlement money and is now poor enough that her children are on public assistance, which means the school district and its insurance company wouldn’t be able to get the money back even if they tried.

For his part, Banks says he has been in contact with NFL teams and is still hoping to land on someone’s offseason roster. Although Banks got a tryout with the Seahawks last year, that kind of comeback has to be viewed as a long shot.

But no matter where his NFL dreams end up, Banks is an easy player to root for.

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50 Responses to “Brian Banks doesn’t hold a grudge, does still have NFL hopes”
  1. wiggum316 says: Mar 23, 2013 11:52 AM

    Come to the CFL Brian, baby steps!

  2. rg3andout says: Mar 23, 2013 11:55 AM

    i would hold a grudge against her, she ruined that young mans career

  3. uwsptke says: Mar 23, 2013 12:02 PM

    I hope that at least he gets the free education that he was entitled to and was wrongfully denied him. Hopefully a USC booster steps up to the plate.

    How the hell do you blow through $750,000 in just a few years? And have so few assets remaining that you qualify for assistance? Does she know Vince Young?

  4. hawkforlife says: Mar 23, 2013 12:07 PM

    The heck with the $$ she owes, put her in jail where she belongs. Plenty of young men go to jail for far less.

  5. pa1856 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:11 PM

    Vikings need a MLB.

  6. petedutcher says: Mar 23, 2013 12:11 PM

    Take away government assistance AND her kids. The witch deserves the book.

  7. gorgorcomes says: Mar 23, 2013 12:15 PM

    This chick should be forced to do some menial job for the school district(for like the next 15 years), and any $ she would’ve been paid should go back to the taxpayers.

  8. pacificnw7722 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:17 PM

    “Gibson has already run out of the settlement money?”

    $750,000?

    That’s just crazy……

  9. kh221 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:17 PM

    She ripped off the taxpayers by $750,000 and cost an innocent man not only a chance at the NFL but also his freedom and there’s nothing that can be done? And now the woman further drains society by living on public assistance after blowing through the money. What a disgraceful justice system.

  10. noeffinway says: Mar 23, 2013 12:20 PM

    Since when is punishment handed out based on ability to pay fines or based on how your children are supported? To not punish this woman just disgusts me and further proves what a farce our judicial system can be.

  11. jhorton83 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:21 PM

    What she did was unconscionable. Not only ruining this man’s life, but making it more difficult for real rape victims to get justice. I know I would hold a grudge, but it’s clear that Brian Banks is a better person than me.

  12. demolition510 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:23 PM

    How the hell she blow $750 large? I’m guessing she gets her hair did every week and fresh Js on her feet. I’m sure her priorities were straight. Tell me I’m wrong. It may sound racist but its probably true. For the record, I grew up in the hood

  13. godofwine330 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:31 PM

    NO way I could forgive her. No way. I was going to say more but this is the internet. There is a special place in hell for her. As a matter of fact, hell may be too easy for her. Is there a worse place?

  14. blacknole08 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:33 PM

    What that woman did to Banks was unfair and she should be in prison.

    Rape is a crime, but so should falsely accusing someone of rape. All is takes is one false accusation to ruin someone’s reputation. It is time the law starts protecting men from these false accusations.

  15. CKL says: Mar 23, 2013 12:37 PM

    What ever happened to welfare being a temporary fill in for people in genuine need? I don’t think anyone would object to it if it were still that today. It’s a lifestyle now. Anyone who truly needs money doesn’t blow through 750k on BS while they have kids.

  16. kindasporty says: Mar 23, 2013 12:40 PM

    It doesn’t do him one bit of good moving forward to waste a single thought on her. With that being said, he is a much better man than I for having this attitude. I’m pretty sure I would let my anger towards her get in the way of the rest of my life. And I don’t think anyone would blame me either.

  17. jayhawk6 says: Mar 23, 2013 12:41 PM

    Sounds like Brian Banks went through a real life “Fatal Attraction”, yet he maintains a Christian attitude toward the skank that ruined his life.

    If he doesn’t land with some team in the NFL, somebody with means ought to step up and offer him some kind of work–he seems to have the honesty aspect employers want to see in their employees.

    Maybe Tony Dungy will get involved.

  18. nineroutsider says: Mar 23, 2013 12:43 PM

    I agree with everyone else (which is rare); I wish her the very worst that life has to offer and that still isn’t enough. She is a horrible person and since “we the people” seem to have no remedy for this situation, karma will hit her back and it will be ugly.

    On the other end of the spectrum; Mr. Banks has an awful lot of good karma coming his way. Maybe someone will want to publish his story and turn it into a TV movie or something. The kid deserves nothing but good things. How did he forgive her so easily though? I could never do that, but I do admire it…to a certain extent.

  19. sportsmeccabi says: Mar 23, 2013 12:47 PM

    In the woman’s defense, at least she finally came out with the truth. She could have just let him rot in prison until he was 40 and be recognized as a sex offender.

    But we really need some rape criminal justice prosecution and rape reform. It’s one of the crimes where a lot of innocent people are sent to prison and a lot of evil-doers walk free.

  20. jetsjetsjetsnow says: Mar 23, 2013 12:50 PM

    Pretty Amazing act of forgiveness!

    Inspiring ability to persevere through that hardship of the incarceration as well as sexual predator stigma while continuing to persue his dreams. You never know how things will play out…

    I respect & encourage you Banks.

  21. treydogg97 says: Mar 23, 2013 1:00 PM

    She probably should sit in jail for as long as he had to.

  22. hawkforlife says: Mar 23, 2013 1:08 PM

    “In the woman’s defense, at least she finally came out with the truth. She could have just let him rot in prison until he was 40 and be recognized as a sex offender.”

    Actually she didn’t. Go back to the original story a few months ago and she was caught on hidden camera not wanting to confess so she’d be able to keep her money. A true sleaze.

  23. applecool1981 says: Mar 23, 2013 1:08 PM

    I get how it would be hard to prosecute her the civic courts to regain the tax payer dollars but how can she not be prosecuted criminally? I get that Banks wants nothing to do with her prosecution but she lied in court and defrauded the state that she lived tax dollars. Her punishment wouldn’t necessarily have anything to do with her crimes against him, even though they should for the whole rape reform. Best thing her punishment would do is get the kids away from her, at least for a while.

  24. hawkforlife says: Mar 23, 2013 1:11 PM

    Oh and a P.S., Bank’s attorney talked him into accepting a plea deal to rape. Now there’s an attorney that should help him now.

  25. in3webelieve says: Mar 23, 2013 1:21 PM

    Better man than me. I would do everything I can to make this bitch rot if I got falsely accused of the crime

  26. illiniftw says: Mar 23, 2013 1:23 PM

    I’m guessing she doesn’t have a job so she should have plenty of free time to clean up the side of a highway or somethin

  27. southpaw79 says: Mar 23, 2013 1:27 PM

    Get the story out far and wide. If the justice system will not do something about this Evil lady, I am sure someone else will. I do not care if that is cruel, what this person did is one step below murder in my eyes.

  28. axespray says: Mar 23, 2013 1:28 PM

    Can we hire Judge Dredd to dole out justice here?

  29. 1rockyracoon says: Mar 23, 2013 1:43 PM

    1) Give most 18 year olds a chunk of money (she probably got around half of the settlement money–lawyer fees) and see how long it lasts.
    2) She should pay a price for her lies, however, she was a 17 year old girl lying about sex. The justice system– police, investigators, courts are the ones who should have put a stop to this before he was convicted. Please, one 17 year old was able to outsmart professionals! How can the prosecutor’s office go after someone when they are the ones who helped her send an innocent man to prison? It’s to common a story– an innocent minority man being wrongfully convicted.

  30. nyjallfingday says: Mar 23, 2013 1:43 PM

    How many man like Banks exist, trapped in prison for crimes they didn’t commit because the liars never came clean? In this regard, he is extremely lucky.

    It is estimated that over 250,000 men will be the victims of prison rape over the course of a year. Let that number sink in- not 250,000 individual rapes, that’s 250,000 rape VICTIMS. Some of those guys suffer more than once. Just thinking about it makes me want to vomit.

    The Stuebenville trial and cases like Banks’ tell us one important thing: we need to seriously redefine and fix the way we as a society view rape and sexual assault, and NOW.

  31. scoocha says: Mar 23, 2013 2:35 PM

    Maybe a good citizen out there will do his dirty work for him and end her life in a long and painful fashion.

  32. ernst90 says: Mar 23, 2013 2:52 PM

    As a Dallas Cowboys fan I would love to have him on my team or atleast the practice squad…This guy deserves atleast one year on some NFL team and maybe the veteran linebackers could teach him a few things and knock some rust off…With that being said the woman that accused him of this horrible crime and let him rot in prison and took away his college education and a potential shot in the NFL should be sent to prison for the rest of her life. Good luck Mr. Banks with anything you do in the future but I would love to see you in a white and blue uniform sacking Eli, Vick and RG3 on Sundays.

  33. fwippel says: Mar 23, 2013 3:01 PM

    Leveling devastating false accusations like that deserve some type of punishment. On the one hand, someone who has falsely accused another of such a violent crime as rape shouldn’t be dis-incentivized from recanting that accusation.

    On the other hand, stealing away what may have been the best years of his professional life is also a violent crime, and should be treated as such.

    Here’s hoping Banks makes it all the way back. His willingness to forgive is amazingly generous.

  34. seaeagle707 says: Mar 23, 2013 3:05 PM

    I watched the vids of him, at a mini-camp at the VMAC, and to say that there was joy on his face would be a major understatement. He might have been an NFL great, were it not for a greedy, self-serving piece of trash.

    BUT, take the lesson here guys, learn from it.

  35. jerrygray721 says: Mar 23, 2013 3:17 PM

    i don’t know the whole story and maybe i should try to research it first.but none the less hear it goes- first of all that woman is dispicable peroid. second i have to assume that the system is atleast partly responsible for some sort of rush to judgement i say that because if he really didn’t do it how does he end up in prison? there could not have been any dna or any other solid evidence aginst him so i feel the system had somthing to do with it and things of this nature should scare all of us.and thirdly i feel that woman has committed fraud aginst the tax payers & the insurance co. and should be put on trial & sentenced accordingly.and last i wish this young man the absolute best in whatever he ends up doing with his life. good luck brian banks

  36. cmonelisha says: Mar 23, 2013 3:36 PM

    why hasnt this guy got a shot yet? theres many many teams that need a LB starting with NYG! atleast bring the man in he seems motivated and im sure he wouldnt ruin his chance..theres way more undeserving people than him thats for sure

  37. cmonelisha says: Mar 23, 2013 3:44 PM

    axespray says:
    Mar 23, 2013 1:28 PM
    Can we hire Judge Dredd to dole out justice here?
    _____

    ‘how do you want it b***h? party bags or juju beans!!’

  38. cowartsh says: Mar 23, 2013 3:45 PM

    This is just one example of why this country is going down the toilet. Hard to prosecute? She admitted that she falsely accused him. What more do you need to prosecute this stupid ass

  39. rajbais says: Mar 23, 2013 4:21 PM

    If they can find a way to prosecute the accuser I support it 100%!

    I think that it is a travesty for those who are falsely accused Because it seems as if being freed should be rewarding enough for the improperly imprisoned individual.

    They lost periods of their life. If it costs Millions to house a prisoner annually the amount to house an improperly imprisoned person should be given back to that person when he or she is set free.

    It makes sense, but it will never Be equivalent to everything that the falsely imprisoned lost. Then again it is better to have something then lose a lot, be free, and then have nothing.

  40. rajbais says: Mar 23, 2013 4:30 PM

    Falsely imprisoned people lose so much to where what they can get in return will never match what they lost, but by at least compensating the falsely imprisoned with whatever financial cost it took to house them it is way better than just leaving that individual free.

    Plus, the government can at least show it is more compassionate and remorseful for hideous mistakes.

  41. pokerbucs1981 says: Mar 23, 2013 9:05 PM

    Of course she blew the money. I bet she also voted for Obama. She wants everything for free. Ghetto ass black people. Feel horrible for the kid. Hopefully he does well in life with or without football.

  42. nesuperfan says: Mar 23, 2013 9:13 PM

    In theory, I am with everyone, who is in favor of prosecuting the woman, but there is a HUGE practical drawback for the person, who was falsely accused.
    Let’s say you were falsely accused, and convicted. You are now sitting in prison for 25 years, having served 5, and your false accuser is having second thoughts. She now wants to do the right thing, but is going to face 20-25 year (or even one year) in prison if she does recant. What so you think she will do? I think that most of these accusers will decide to let you rot.
    Unfortunately, I think we are forced to give them a pass for fear of keeping an innocent person in prison.

  43. briang123 says: Mar 23, 2013 10:47 PM

    What a surprise this happened while Bush was President. when America threw Bush out of office and put an end to the subjugation of minorities, it was a great day. It is a shame Banks had to go to jail because of the criminal Bush and criminal Republican Party.

  44. fdugrad says: Mar 23, 2013 11:02 PM

    nesuperfan: Really good point.

  45. rukkus1 says: Mar 24, 2013 5:42 AM

    When i first read briang123’s comment, i thought it was logicalvoice who said it

  46. cowboyscanada says: Mar 24, 2013 8:42 AM

    Maybe give the CFL a shot to start….however, no guarantee he would make it there either. Guy deserves a break,,, she deserves jail time.

  47. iamedreed says: Mar 24, 2013 9:59 AM

    kinda funny how there are numerous laws out there aimed at protecting the accuser who needs nothing more then her word, but yet there is ZERO support for these guys whose lives are truly ruined over lies for no reason at all

    just ask the duke lacrosse team how fiar these laws are

  48. jasonsoroski says: Mar 24, 2013 8:29 PM

    Kudos and best wishes to Brian. Agree that it is a travesty to let her off the hook. Justice is no longer blind. Justice is a victim of political correctness.

  49. winb11 says: Mar 25, 2013 6:44 AM

    What this woman did makes me absolutely sick to my stomach. I watched the segment on 60 Minutes but actually missed about a minute of it right after Mr. Banks was describing how he went somewhere with the girl (consensually), so didn’t see what they said happened next. Did they explain how he was notified of the accusations and exactly what his story of that day was? Obviously I know he was falsely accused by this heartless sociopath, but was curious if there were other details I missed.

    One other thing I thought about is that the world works in mysterious ways. Obviously this is a terrible story in that he lost a full ride to a legendary football school and possibly a chance to play in the NFL. But ya never know, maybe in those college years or NFL years he would have suffered a terrible, career/life-ending injury and that this new path will afford him a fruitful and safe career in whatever he ends up ultimately making it in.

    The girl should 100% be punished and it still makes me sick to think that someone could get away with doing something like she did. There is clearly something really wrong with her to allow someone to lose their scholarship, ruin their career, and then after causing them to spend 5 years in jail send them a freaking Facebook friend request because she “feels bad”. I’ve seen and heard a lot of messed up disgusting things in this world but that is a different level of disturbing.

  50. usobserverdotcom says: Mar 25, 2013 3:04 PM

    It is cases like this that highlight just how prevalent false charges are today, and why the US~Observer is so important. Had he come to the US~Observer, we could have helped before this spiraled out of control.

    One thing is for sure if you are innocent, never, ever, EVER, take a plea deal. Fight your charges with everything you have! And for goodness sake, contact the US~Observer, it is what we do.

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