football Edit

A focused Omari Thomas sees the recruiting trail more clearly

A visit to Tennessee last month put the Vols firmly in the mix for Briarcrest (Tenn.) lineman Omari Thomas. The man known as 'Big O' is starting to see his football future much more clearly as he focuses on a chosen few.

"Right now I'm taking it slowly," Thomas said.

"I'm enjoying the process. It's really serious right now as a lot of schools hit me up. I'm going to commit at the Army game and then sign in February."

Briarcrest students aren't allowed to graduate early, which is why Thomas won't sign in December and will elect to do so in the second wave of signees.

The Visit to Knoxville in June was a reminder of what Rocky Top has to offer both athletically and academically.

"It really felt good down there," Thomas said. "I just had a really good vibe down there. They were more confident in themselves.

"LIke (Jeremy) Pruitt was more confident. Last year when I went down, he talked about how they weren't going to be very good and he was straight up about it. Last month, he was very confident in knowing what they are going to do."

Thomas plans on focusing on a set group of schools this fall.
Thomas plans on focusing on a set group of schools this fall.

Thomas talks to Pruitt, defensive coordinator Derrick Ansley and defensive line coach Tracy Rocker a good bit. He likes the trio and can see himself playing for them.

"They are people I'd want to play for," Thomas said. "They are good people and they want the best for you. There are quality people at all the schools that I've narrowed it down too and that's what makes this difficult. I just have to find the place that makes me feel most comfortable. A place I can contribute to a winning program."

Thomas announced a final six last month that included Tennessee, Ole Miss, Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn and Texas A&M. He plans on taking visits this fall and will lean heavily on the people close to him to finalize his decision.

"My parents will play a big role," Thomas said. "They have always played a big role from the moment that I started getting recruited. I'll always talk to them before I make any decisions or commitments. I feel like that the decision I'm going to make could benefit my family in the long run so I want to make sure they are involved." ranks Thomas as a 4-star defensive tackle in the class of 2020.