College football coaches love to say they’re not going to use something as an excuse right before they use whatever it is as an excuse.

Well, most college football coaches.

Tennessee Vols defensive coordinator Tim Banks isn’t one of those coaches.

On Thursday, Banks was asked about the Vols’ extremely thin and young secondary.

Banks answered the question with a standard “next man up” type response.

And then he made sure to point out that he wouldn’t be using Tennessee’s youth as an excuse this season.

Defensive coordinator Tim Banks runs a drill during Tennessee football spring practice at University of Tennessee, Thursday, March 24, 2022.
Volspractice0324 1449 Vols

Previous coaches at Tennessee — Butch Jones for example — loved using the Vols’ youth and lack of depth as an excuse.

But that’s not Banks’ style. He has a standard and it doesn’t change based on the personnel on the field.