Friday, March 1, 2013
Could Cody Thomas start as frosh QB?
By Bob Przybylo
When talking about Oklahoma’s quarterbacks race for 2013, most of the talk centers on Blake Bell and Trevor Knight.
The feeling has been that Bell is the favorite and Knight has a legitimate chance to win the spot. But what about Cody Thomas?
Oklahoma signee Cody Thomas will play both baseball and football for the Sooners.
It’s not often a true freshman can simply walk onto campus and become the man. Thomas believes he can. And based on his production, there’s no reason to doubt him.
Thomas, who is 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds, completed 265 of 419 passes for 4,154 yards with 46 touchdowns against just six interceptions in 2012 for Colleyville (Texas) Heritage. He completed 63 percent of his passes and finished the class ranked No. 178 in the ESPN 300.
Thomas didn’t enroll early, but he’s going to be a regular fixture on OU’s campus this spring. In the past, Saturday high school baseball games were common for him. But because of a school leaving the district, most of his Saturdays are free this season.
His destination? Norman.
“I’m definitely going to be going up there a lot on Saturdays and weekends,” Thomas said. “I want to get a better feel of what it’s like on the campus. I want to absorb as much as I can, and I’m sure they’re going to try to teach me as much as they can.”
He committed to OU in May and never flirted with another school. He said Florida State entered the conversation in January and asked whether he was interested. Thomas said he was still 100 percent with the Sooners and moved on.
Any doubts he might have had were erased during his official visit in December. Knight was his host, and Thomas said he has since stayed in constant communication with Knight.
Thomas began his senior season of high school baseball last week, hitting a home run during the opener. But baseball is not a hindrance to his OU experience, and the plan remains for him to play both sports.
“He is adamant that he truly wants to play football, unless he was picked so high that he couldn't turn away from it,” OU coach Bob Stoops said on national signing day, referencing Thomas' MLB draft potential. “Most indications are that football is important enough to him that he's gonna want to pursue that. We wouldn't have pursued this and gone down this road if we didn't feel there was a great chance Cody would be with us.”
And with no leader in the quarterback clubhouse, Thomas hasn’t conceded that it won’t be him taking the first OU snap in 2013.
“The job is open,” Thomas said. “I’m going to go up there in the summer and do the best I possibly can. If I’m not starting, I’m most likely going to be redshirting.
“And that’s fine with me. If I’m not getting a chance to play, then I don’t want to waste a year of eligibility.”
For now, Thomas is focused on his senior season of baseball. He said it’s a special couple of months coming up for him, as he has been starting since his freshman season.
He talks with OU quarterbacks coach Josh Heupel at least once a week, but he doesn’t stay in constant contact with the baseball staff. But he said he is following the OU team and is impressed with the team’s undefeated start.
Thomas said he’s going to wear No. 20 in baseball, and he believes No. 14 is going to be his jersey for football. No. 14 is the same jersey number Heupel and Sam Bradford wore during their time at OU. Thomas might be the next great No. 14 at quarterback, and it might come sooner than people think.