Thomas, who is a veteran of college athletics, came to Cincinnati from Akron on October 20, 2005. Since taking over at UC, Thomas has instituted his vision for the Bearcats athletics future called CATAPULT that focused on three main initiatives.
Winning Big East team championships
High-level academic achievement
Integration between the UC Campus and Greater Cincinnati
In 2006, Thomas was given the task of finding a new head football coach when Mark Dantonio left for Michigan State University. He found Brian Kelly at Central Michigan and watched the Bearcats football program reach new heights winning two Big East Championships and making back-to-back BCS Bowl games.