West Virginia will have to open the season without one of its starters in cornerback Ishmael “Icky” Banks. On Monday morning Mountaineers head coach Dana Holgorsen announced that Banks would be suspended for the first three games of the season following an academic matter.
The news means that an already overmatched WVU squad must take on Alabama in the opener without one of its senior leaders in the secondary. Banks recorded two interceptions and 32 total tackles for the Mountaineers last season.
According to Michael Casagrande of AL.com, Holgerson has been working redshirt sophomore Terrell Chestnut and senior Travis Bell into the rotation in Banks’ absence.
WVU and Alabama will kickoff the season at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game from Atlanta.