April 12, 2006

Scarlet Nation gets the latest scoop on Thomas

It's familiar territory. The clock ticks down to the end of yet another signing period and Rutgers fans are waiting on one of the top uncommitted players in the country. Last time, the sport was football, and the player was Jason Adjepong, a defensive end from Carteret. The loss of Adjepong to Virginia Tech hurt, but with a quickly rising team that was fresh off a bowl, it was just a bump in the road. But this time, the stakes are higher.

Aside from the jump to the hardwood, the latest recruiting saga is different because the player in question, Lance Thomas, could be the difference between an NCAA bid and another year of mediocrity. It is different because, as of this moment, the Scarlet Knights don't have a single high school senior lined up to join the team next year. And it is different because Fred Hill needs Lance Thomas, more than Greg Schiano needed Jason Adjepong, perhaps more than any player has been needed at Rutgers in recent memory.

The wait appeared to be over on Monday, as rumors swirled that Thomas was ready to announce his decision. And there was no shortage of people with "inside sources" claiming that Thomas was indeed headed to Rutgers, that Fred Hill Jr. was earning his first paycheck in a big way.

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