Male Athlete of the Week

Dan Bannister - Men's Basketball

Dan Bannister - Men’s basketball
Dan Bannister - Men’s basketball

Men’s basketball guard Dan Bannister has had strong season, scoring 168 points including 11 points and against York last Saturday. The six-foot Newmarket, Ont. native said he started playing when he was five years old. His perseverance has paid off—not only did the Gaels beat York 71-62 in Saturday’s game, Bannister was also awarded the inaugural Marco W. Alessio memorial award.

The award is a scholarship given to a team member who shows a combination of academic and athletic excellence. Alessio played basketball for the Gaels from 1987 to 1989 and after Queen’s became a teacher. He was shot and killed in Madagascar last February. Bannister was this year’s recipient.

“It was a game in honour of him, a bunch of his old fellow teammates came out,” he said. “They presented me with the award and it was a pretty big honour to win.”

Bannister said he loves the competition and being able to demonstrate his skills. As for balancing his third year in philosophy with basketball, he said his schedule is accommodating.

“It’s a commitment every night and most weekends and you just have to plan around that,” he said. “It’s not too bad for me because I don’t have a lot of class, but for an engineer it’s definitely a lot tougher.”

Aside from winning the scholarship, Bannister has a couple of proud on court moments that stand out in his mind.

“Last year I got 27 points against Ryerson. We lost huge, but I remember that,” he said. Another moment was in a game right before Christmas last year, when the Gaels beat Windsor.

“I got the assist… I passed it to [forward] Mitch [Leger] and he laid it in. There was only a second or two left”

His advice to rookies is simple and judging by his success, is like useful as well.

“Stay in the gym and keep practicing.”

1) Childhood dream job?

I wanted to be an NBA player.

2) Favourite hang out spot on campus?

The gym. It’s really the only place I’m at a lot.

3) Ideal vacation spot?

I don’t know…I like London, England.

4) What do you love most about Queen’s?

The basketball team.

5) What do you dislike most about Queen’s?

The fact that they now serve you breakfast at Ban Righ.

6) If sports isn’t your future, what is your ideal career?

I’d like to be a writer of novels.

7) Favourite season?

Spring.

8) Favourite basketball team

Toronto Raptors.

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