Thomas Picks Pack!

Head Basketball Coach Sidney Lowe has landed his first commitment of the 2007 recruiting class in Johnny Thomas. (N&O Link)

The 6-foot-5 Thomas was impressive last month in the annual Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions and has a strong basketball resume. He averaged 17.8 points per game last season while leading Greensboro Day to the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association championship. In a regular-season matchup, Greensboro Day defeated eventual state 3-A champion Greensboro Dudley by 18 points. In May, he led the North Carolina Gaters to the AAU U-17 state title.

Thomas’ recruiting was led by assistant coach, Pete Strickland. The Wolfpack beat out scholarship offers from Virginia Tech and Miami (Fla.) and interest from Wake Forest for Thomas. State coaches believe that they ‘got in on the ground floor’ with Thomas, and that his skills and performance was going to continue to generate interest from a growing list of schools. This decision became more plausible last week when Eric Wallace chose Virginia and it became more obvious that State was focusing all of our efforts on Thomas.

Thomas size and game is compared by some to a blend of Cameron Bennerman and PJ Tucker.

Greensboro’s News & Record says that “Thomas could have waited” in their article on the news.

The athletic 6-foot-5 wing was a rising star on the AAU circuit. More offers could very well have been on the way.

“I could have waited for all these other colleges,” Thomas said, “but when it came down to it I already knew where I wanted to go years before.”

“They put all their focus on me,” Thomas said. “I liked all the coaches, all the energy they brought to my recruitment.”

Inlcuding Thomas, State has five scholarships for the 2007 class.

Projected 2007-2008 NC State Basketball Roster

Senior Class
(1) Gavin Grant (G/F)

Junior Class
(2) Courtney Fells (SG)
(3) Ben McCauley (F/C)

Sophomore Class
(4) Brandon Costner (hopefully gets redshirt) (3F/4F)
(5) Trevor Ferguson (SG)
(6) Dennis Horner (F)
(7) Fernold Degand (PG)
(8) Bartosz Lewandowski (C)

Freshman Class
(9) Johnny Thomas (G/F)
(10) N/A
(11) N/A
(12) N/A
(13) N/A

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57 Responses to Thomas Picks Pack!

  1. primacyone 06/26/2006 at 10:46 AM #


  2. BJD95 06/26/2006 at 10:49 AM #

    With a couple more solid additions, I think the 2007-08 team could surprise some people. Thomas sounds like the type of player who could thrive in Lowe’s system.

  3. Dan 06/26/2006 at 10:58 AM #

    Nice signing to get things kicked off for Sid. He’s not highly ranked, but that will change after the TOC. The kid is a strong athlete. JT is gonna bring some excitement.

    PG and post player now. Go Sid!

  4. Wulfpack 06/26/2006 at 11:00 AM #

    This is a fantastic signing. I get so tired of seeing NC talent go elsewhere. Keep ’em coming!

  5. bTHEredterror 06/26/2006 at 11:36 AM #

    Sid & Co(Pete Strickland) first recruited player: in state athelete with character (gives credit to teammates for his improvement), grades (he’s already qualified), and a state championship ring. Hmmm, not bad at all. I saw this young man play against Dudley last year, and he’s a skywalker like Cam without the shaky ballhandling. Does need work on the J though.

    Stay tuned, I’ve a feeling the next couple of months might shock even us, with our inflated expectations and whatnot.

  6. choppack1 06/26/2006 at 11:52 AM #

    rt – Keep in mind, Cam in high school didn’t have the great jumper he left college with. I think Thomas is already improving in this area based on what I’ve read.

    I consider this a solid addition to our squad. Lowe probably now needs to focus on trying to land a highly regarded recruit or two if possible. Unless both Grant and Fells blow up next year, w/ the addition of Thomas, we’re set at the 2-3 spots.

    I am happy to have him.

    In the media bias arena – the Winston Salem Journal said that this was Sidney’s first recruit. Nothing like an informed journalist, eh?

  7. redfred2 06/26/2006 at 11:52 AM #

    Lift off has commenced. Once other kids get a taste of what this staff is all about, it’s going to mushroom from then on. This is just the start.

  8. Dan 06/26/2006 at 11:56 AM #

    “In the media bias arena – the Winston Salem Journal said that this was Sidney’s first recruit”

    Technically they are correct. Sid wasnt officially the coach when Degand and Lew signed on. All the media outlets are reporting it as such because of that.

  9. StateFans 06/26/2006 at 12:03 PM #

    ^ Is that true? Didn’t Sidney officially started the day or two before the announcements of these players? Wasn’t that the purpose of waiting for to announce those commitments?

  10. RickJ 06/26/2006 at 12:49 PM #

    This is really good news. Our 2007 class is about as important as a class can be. You just can’t afford to have back-to-back sub par classes in the ACC. We’ve got so much to offer recruits but we don’t have those long term relationships that sometimes pay off in recruiting. If we can get one guard from among Wright or McMillan and one inside guy from among Vaughn or Hickson to go with Thomas, I will be happy. If we can land a third recruit from these players, I will be ecstatic.

  11. wayofthemaster 06/26/2006 at 12:50 PM #

    Chris Wright, come on down, you’re the next contestant on the “Revival of the Wolfpack.” Wright and Thomas…that sounds like a good backcourt, right?

  12. choppack1 06/26/2006 at 1:29 PM #

    “Technically they are correct. Sid wasnt officially the coach when Degand and Lew signed on. All the media outlets are reporting it as such because of that.”

    Actually, they are probably all reporting it because they aren’t as informed about NC State basketball recruiting as they should be. If they are technically correct, they should at least mention the other 2 additions. Like I said, I doubt that they know it.

  13. WilmingtonWolf05 06/26/2006 at 1:31 PM #

    sounds about “wright”!

    Ok, ok, that’s my one bad joke for the day.

  14. Jeremy Hyatt 06/26/2006 at 2:08 PM #

    man… talk about hitting the ground running! Sid-Lo was made for this job : }

    come on chris wright, where else can you be guaranteed a starting job as a freshman in a high octane offense?!

  15. NCSUSix 06/26/2006 at 2:11 PM #

    I am really excited about wolfpack basketall!
    the pack is BACK!!!

  16. redfred2 06/26/2006 at 2:57 PM #

    Some of the top recruits in the country will be taking closer look shortly. You can count on it. The HEAT is surging out of Raleigh, NC right about now.

  17. TPack 06/26/2006 at 3:06 PM #

    “I get so tired of seeing NC talent go elsewhere.”

    The Football team is also doing a good job a keeping in state talent at home. All 6 07 committs so far are NC Players.

    Lowe should be pushing hard for either Wright or McMillian next. Both could be great PGs for us.

  18. duckmanjw 06/26/2006 at 3:23 PM #

    Wright has said numerous times that he has moved on. So I say we move on as well.

    McMillian is a tough situation for State. If we recruit him hard and he turns us down, then we really look like fools especially with his dad’s ties to the school and Lowe. Even more so if he goes to Herb at ASU. Its best that we show him some interest but not go all out unless he starts to show great interest in coming here. After all, even though he would be a great addition, he’s still barely a top 100 guy right now.

    It would be like one of Jordan’s kids turning down UNC to play for us!

    On the other hand, Hudson, the 4 star(top 50) guard out of Hargrave says he likes us alot but most of the major recruiting indexes say we haven’t even offered him.

    To me, he should be priority #1!!

  19. Mr O 06/26/2006 at 3:32 PM #

    I saw Cameron in HS/AAU ball probably 5 or 6 times. He could shoot then too. He had great form even back when he was a junior when I saw him hit 5 threes against the NC’s top team – WS Reynolds.

    Unfortunately, he had to play center on defense.

  20. vtpackfan 06/26/2006 at 3:42 PM #

    I like this theme of taking a good hard look at the best this state has to offer. A PJ Tucker type, c’mon everyone in the nation has a spot for the tweener types. The versatility causes mismatch’s everytime you step on the court. Honestly goota wipe the slate clean with the Wright, Mc Millan types and give this staff the respect it is clearly due. Let them evaluate the team and what they determine is a top priority and stop making references to work done by the past regime. You think that with SL connections to the Balt./DC area that he can’t determine who he should be focusing on the most? By the way Thomas is a verbal or letter commit?

  21. Trout 06/26/2006 at 4:02 PM #

    Wright has NOT “moved on” when it comes to considering NC State as one of his possible college choices. I still think we have a good shot to land him. Georgetown leads, but it is far from over.

  22. cornellpackfan 06/26/2006 at 4:20 PM #

    This is a verbal commitment early signing period is months away

  23. redfred2 06/26/2006 at 4:34 PM #

    It’s not a a national LOI, that’s at least encuoraging.

  24. BladenWolf 06/26/2006 at 4:43 PM #

    I recall posting a couple of weeks ago about the need to look at NC talent (as WF has successfully done) in order to transition between the next couple of seasons to the consistant national level recruits, which I know Coach Lowe will attract.
    I am ecstatic that Sidney, Pete and the guys have done this so quickly. There are other NC prospects out there that are quality kids that can add stability to the squad while the program turns the corner and begins to ingnite the mo that will attract the five star players annually.
    I sent the N&O link to my UNX brother-in-law. I love being on offense again.

  25. primacyone 06/26/2006 at 4:44 PM #

    Thomas said Sunday from Greensboro. “I love the coaches . . .”

    Thomas said. “I really like the coaches.”

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