ST. CHARLES, Mo. -- The long-awaited debut of Xavier commit Chris Thomas at the junior college level came to fruition this afternoon.
Thomas, a six-foot-five guard, showed flashes of his potential at the Mullens Top 100 JUCO camp. Playing alongside top-rated prospect Chris Jones, Thomas was able to score in a number of different ways. Perhaps most impressive, however, was his passing ability and overall court vision.
While it wasn’t a dominant performance by any means, it wasn’t bad for a guy who hasn’t suited up competitively in nine months.
"My performance was good,” Thomas told A10Report.com postgame. “I’m just now getting back on the court and so I’m just now getting my game right. My jumper fell, I had about 12 [points]. . .it’s the beginning of the season, though.”
The ever-confident Thomas still needs to grow in the maturity column, too. From the first possession of the game, he was talking trash with the player defending him. The jawing back and forth continued every trip down the court until Thomas eventually was called for a technical. Several coaches who weren’t paying attention at the time looked up to ask if it was on Chris. Clearly he carries a poor reputation when it comes to his maturity.
Thomas said the talking has a purpose, though.
”That’s something I like to do,” he said. “That’s something that gets the game going. It’s been nine months since I’ve had somebody guard me like that. It was fun, but at the same time, he was much bigger and much stronger.”
His on-court talent is undeniable. To be his size and do the things he does, it’s no wonder why he’s such a highly-regarded prospect. Thomas said he’s been spending a lot of time in the gym, and was incredibly realistic about what he needs to do to improve. Often times on Saturday, he was bumped off-balance by a stronger defender. That being said, it’s worth reminding everyone that he should still be in high school at this stage.
After former Musketeers assistant Rasheen Davis left for Manhattan, there were questions as to whether or not Thomas would stay committed to the A-10 stalwart.
”My contact is still the same,” Thomas said. “I’m still going to keep my commitment [to Xavier]. I’m not looking to get no [sic] other schools. I’m just trying to win a championship with my Chipola team."
It’ll be interesting to see how Thomas progresses his game over the coming years, but Xavier fans are in for a treat when he arrives in the Queen City.