Talkin' tough

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:08 AM ET

In less than one calendar year, the Mouth from the South has lived up to his own billing in the CFL.

But if you ask Korey Banks why he talks so much, the answer isn't what you expect.

"I don't do too much talking on the field, just enough to communicate with my teammates," said the Ottawa Renegades defensive back. "Once business is finished, then I can say something."

Actions often speak louder than words so Banks is becoming quite the voice around the league. The halfback boldly predicted he would get more than a dozen interceptions this season and lead the loop in that category.

Halfway through 2005 and the Boynton Beach, Fla., native is living up to his level of expectation.

Banks has seven picks in 11 games and has sealed victories for the Renegades with great plays late in victories.

The 26-year-old burst into the league for three starts late in 2004 and carried over the initial confidence into training camp. His colourful outbursts caused him to get into some tussles in practice, the latest with backup quarterback Paul Peterson.

But it's the same unbridled enthusiasm that made TSN mike Banks for a game this year to find out what kind of words he dished out on the field. The result was worth the trouble, as Banks picked off Danny McManus and boasted to his teammates on the sidelines.

He uses the same loud bravado off the field.

"I feel if I was in the NFL this year, I should lead the league in interceptions," Banks said. "I've done this at every level and everywhere I've been. I'm just adding to my totals.

"Last year, when I got here for a few games, I had a hand on the ball five times. I should have all those picks and that would have been a great start. That would have been five real quick in three games. I dropped a few this year and a couple were called back. It's still pretty good.

"I want to lead the league and I will."

Ottawa came out to a great start despite being predicted for a last-place finish in the East Division by most league pundits. So while some would call the Renegades play surprising, Banks wouldn't.

"There was no surprise for us because we have more athletes on the field than any team in this league," he said.

"We just have to find a way to put them in the right position.

"We have a lot young guys like myself. A couple of mental busts at different times of the game can give teams a lot of points. If you can do that against a good quarterback, you can't do that."

Banks, who is the cousin of Renegades backup quarterback Brad Banks, could be trying to jump to the NFL in the near future. He prefers to talk about the games at hand.

"I'm playing my option year out right now," Banks said about his time in Ottawa.

"It's all business. I really like the guys, the coaches, the organization and the fans.

"I'm trying to have longevity.

"I'm trying to show them what they're going to get out of me if I'm still here next year. I'll be here every game and ready."


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