By Kyle Hightower/The Associated Press
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Johnthan Banks has won the Jim Thorpe Award, given to the nation’s top defensive back.
The Mississippi State senior was honored Thursday night at the Home Depot College Football Awards show. He is the fourth consecutive Southeastern Conference player to win the award.
Banks, a former East Webster standout, beat out Alabama’s Dee Milliner and Fresno State safety Phillip Thomas.
Banks had 59 tackles, four interceptions and seven pass breakups this year. He was also chosen first-team All-SEC by The Associated Press.
The Bulldogs play Northwestern in the Gator Bowl on Jan. 1.