Arkansas Forward Becomes Model Of Consistency

FAYETTEVILLE -- Steadily, Arkansas forward Charles Thomas is becoming a model of consistency.

That trend continued Tuesday night during his team's 75-59 win against Central Michigan in front of 8,316 fans in Bud Walton Arena.

Suddenly, his steady play has become as routine as a morning cup of coffee.

Thomas, a 6-foot-8 junior, scored 14 points and grabbed 6 rebounds on Tuesday night. It was his fourth consecutive double-figure game, and his fifth in the last six games.

So, what's his secret?

Razorbacks sophomore guard Sean McCurdy has a theory.

"Charles, you know, is just a hard worker," McCurdy said. "He's going to go in there and bang and get a lot of rebounds and score some points in the paint.

"He's just working real hard and putting in the effort."

In last Saturday's 71-61 win against Missouri-Kansas City, Thomas had 16 points and 8 rebounds.

"It's all about hard work," Thomas said. "You want to stay consistent. Just keeping on doing things I've been doing in practice, you know.

"It's about being able to do the things I know I'm capable of in the game. It's a tribute to my teammates being able to get me the ball as well.

"Our guys on the outside have opened it up for me to score more."

One thing which has benefited Thomas is playing the 4 spot instead of the 3.

"Playing at the 4 position, it's a matchup problem for anyone who guards me," Thomas said. "At the same time, I can guard any of them as well."

Thomas said Arkansas played much better than it did Saturday, basically because it cut down on its turnovers. Saturday, the Razorbacks committed 24 turnovers. On Tuesday, the Hogs had 12.

"This was a better game because we didn't have as many turnovers," Thomas said. "It's just one of those things (Arkansas) coach (Heath) did in practice. Turn the ball over and you run.

"Me, personally, I'm going to shoot the ball before I turn it over."

Because of final exams, Arkansas doesn't play again until Dec. 14 when it hosts Oakland (Mich.) University.

So, how will the Razorbacks handle the break?

"We don't want to take time off from basketball," Thomas said. "We need to get better. We'll just have to stay in shape and stay focused.

"That's our goal."




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