The three-star prospect has several offers on the table, including Western Kentucky.
Thomas Talks Cajuns Offer
According to the 6-foot-4, 195-pound Thomas, the Ragin' Cajuns in Louisiana offered him a few weeks ago after seeing some of his game film on YouTube. Last season he was the Western Valley District Player of the Year, Danville Register & Bee All-Metro Co-Player of the Year, first-team All-Northwest Region and honorable mention all-state by VirginiaPreps.com at George Washington High School in Danville, Va.
"I was getting out of a workout when I found out about the offer (from the Cajuns)," Thomas recently told the Cajun Redzone. "I felt great. For someone just to look at something like that on YouTube and offer you based on that shows a whole lot."
Thomas posted big numbers last season as he averaged 16.6 points, 11.4 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game to lead George Washington HS to a 25-3 record and Western Valley District regular season and tournament championships. He had 12 double-doubles while running an offense that averaged nearly 90 points per game.
An academic qualifier, Thomas had offers as a senior from Presbyterian, Appalachian State, Delaware, Gardner-Webb, Niagara, North Carolina Central, UNC Greensboro, Robert Morris, Tennessee Tech, Towson, Western Kentucky, Winthrop, Norfolk State and East Tennessee State. VCU also expressed interest but did not have an available scholarship for Thomas, who was rated by ESPN as the No. 21 prospect among Class of 2013 recruits in Virginia with a grade of 63 as a "role player at the mid-major level."
Ultimately, Thomas decided to attend Hargrave as a postgraduate and play a year for coach A.W. Hamilton. (The head coach last season at George Washington HS was Thomas Carr, who played for Hamilton at Hargrave. Carr was hired in June as an assistant coach at ETSU.)
Thomas said he is aware of standing offers from the Cajuns, ETSU, Radford, Georgia Southern and Delaware. He expects the schools that previously offered him to get involved again once they realize that Thomas is a post-grad player.
As a day student, Thomas will make the 30-minute commute from Danville to take classes at Hargrave, whose alumni include current NBA players Jordan Crawford, Marreese Speights and David West. His first day of school is Aug. 17.
"I really thought I needed to mature more before I got to the next level," Thomas said of his reasoning for attending Hargrave. "I thought Hargrave would get me ready for how college would be. My high school coach went to Hargrave, so that helped me get there."
According to Thomas, he will "more than likely" make official visits to learn more about ETSU and the Cajuns in August.
Thomas is a long, versatile, athletic guard with a solid mid-range game who can score, get to the rim and finish and defend at a high level on the perimeter. He has room to improve his outside shot and become more disciplined on the defensive end.
"This past year I ran the one, two and three," Thomas said. "I'm not the best ballhandler, but I know what to do and not do with the ball. I really like to get rebounds and putbacks and get my teammates involve. I also like to slash to the basket and help the team out however I can."
Speaking of the Cajuns, Thomas knows about point guard Elfrid Payton and how he helped the USA Basketball U19 team win the gold medal at the FIBA U19 World Championship this summer.
"I've heard about him and saw him play," Thomas said of Payton. "He's one of the top point guards in the country and has a chance to play in the NBA. Their coaches said they want me to come in as a one and two guard and do what he's done for them."
Thomas, who wants to major in special education, has yet to decide whether he will sign during the NCAA's early period (Nov. 13-20) or regular period (April 16-May 21). He will weigh several factors during the recruiting process before signing with a college.
"It's basically going to be about academics and how the coaches are," Thomas said. "I'm not going to a school because of the name. You want to be able to communicate with the coaches and have the major you want to study. I'm going to be flexible (with my timetable), and we'll see how things work out."
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