October 17, 2008

Thomas attracting interest

Paterson (NJ) Paterson Catholic small forward Shaquille Thomas is one of the top small forwards in the class of 2010. The New Jersey standout has started to reel in some solid scholarship offers and CuseConfidential caught up with him to find out more.

Thomas, 6-foot-6, 175 pounds holds a hand full of offers from the likes of LaSalle, Fordham, Providence, and Xavier. One other team that has also offered is Syracuse University.

"Yes, [Syracuse offered]" Thomas said. "I was kind of happy because that was my first Big East school to really offer me a scholarship It was a good accomplishment."

The four star prospects also added some extra thoughts on the Orange.

"It is a good school with great tradition. There are a lot of players that graduate who come back, they have good academics, and it its a good environment up there. I really like it up there."

Recently after being offered by Syracuse Thomas made a verbal commitment to Syracuse, but he made a change after talking with family.

"I called Coach Hop and told him I was ready, but my family thought that it was kind of to soon. I am still open and waiting at this moment It was not that I really pulled back it was just like wait and see for more options and visit more schools."

This summer the four star prospect in the 2010 class made a trip up to Syracuse for one of their summer camps.

"I went to the Syracuse elite camp," Thomas stated. "It went real good a couple of players like Jonny Flynn and Paul Harris were there. It was a good experience for me."

On the visit Thomas saw a lot of things that he was no expecting and was also able to see a few more things that opened his eyes up that much more about the Orange. What were some of the items that stuck out for Thomas?

"How the coaches were, Coach Hopkins was very energized and I did not expect that. He is a real good coach I think. I really did like the environment and especially the Carrier Dome because of how big and nice it is. "

Will Thomas be making any visits back to Syracuse soon?

I am supposed to be going up there Friday, but I don't know yet. I have to see if my coach can give me a ride up there or if I can arrange something because Denver plays the Phoenix suns."

After the possible visit to Syracuse this weekend it could be a long time before Thomas hits the road for another visit to a school.

"After the high school season is over I will probably take some more visits in the spring."

One of the key factors in his decision will be playing time. Thomas does not feel the need to start right away, but he also does not want to be on the end of the bench with no playing time.

"I am not talking about starting maybe being the sixth or seventh man, but I at least want to be in the rotation. I definitely want to be in the rotation"

Being one of the top prospects in the nation is important to the New Jersey product and he spoke about his game and what could take him to the next level.

"I think I have a lot of skills to be one of the best players in the country all I have to do is just keep working on my ball handling and getting bigger. I am a big guard that can do a lot of stuff I am very athletic and I can shoot the ball. I just need to work on my ball handling and get bigger. I want to be about 190 pounds going into next year."

As it stands now Thomas will be in no rush to make a college decision.

I don't even know. I guess when my family and I think that the time is right then I will make my decision.

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