Print and Go Back On The Trail: Southeast Region [Print without images]

Wednesday, January 9, 2013
No. 1 OLB gears up for decision

By Corey Dowlar

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- There might have been more explosive plays that resulted in points during the Under Armour All-America Game, but Matthew Thomas' (Miami/Booker T. Washington) hit on Michigan commitment Shane Morris (Warren, Mich./De La Salle Collegiate) made the biggest impact.

Morris took off with the ball under his arm looking for space.

But what resulted was the nation's top-ranked outside linebacker reading the play perfectly and delivering a de-cleating tackle on the 6-foot-3, 190-pound quarterback.

"It felt good," Thomas said. "I thought he was going to run towards the sideline, but he started running towards me. So I just pulled him and hit him.”

Thomas also contributed an interception and a couple more tackles to the black team in the win allowing him to feel satisfied with how he played on the big stage.

"Yeah, I was happy with how I played," he said. "I had some good players around me, but it was good."

With prep football now behind him, Thomas' attention is now fixed on recruiting. Up first is a visit to Alabama followed by Miami, Florida State and Georgia.

A daunting task to choose between college football powers, Thomas intends to enjoy it for all it is worth.

"I am looking forward to the official visits so I can move on and make my decision," he said.

"The next time I will put on pads, it will be in college. I am looking forward to it, no matter what school I choose."

The same three names that have been linked to Thomas are the ones he says are recruiting him with more fervor.

"I think the schools that are recruiting me the hardest are Florida State, Alabama and Miami," he said.

ESPN ranks Thomas as the No. 8 prospect for the Class of 2013.