California Dreaming

For JUCO transfer Thomas Patton the biggest adjustment might be the scenery.

For JUCO transfer Thomas Patton Ames is definitely a change of scenery. The defensive lineman hails from Oakland, Cali. and spent a season at UCLA before attending San Francisco City College.


So what's this Californian doing in Iowa?


"Most people through the whole recruiting process were wondering why I'd want to come out there all the way from California," Patton said. "I just felt that Coach Nelly was good to me and I would do him a favor – he was upfront."


Patton finished his redshirt sophomore season at CCSF with 12 sacks, 70 tackles, and two fumble recoveries, earning himself all-conference honors in the Coast Conference. He was a big-time get for UCLA coming out of Oakland Tech, where he was a high school all-American.


But returning to the Division I level isn't enough for Patton, he wants to make an impact.


"That's what the plan is from the get-go," Patton said. "That's what they brought me here for – to play."


The 6-foot-3, 290 pounder, is versatile, he can play both inside and outside on the defensive line and is pushing for playing time.


Coming out of CCSF Patton considered scholarship offers from Oregon State, Missouri, UNLV, San Diego State, UTEP and Marshall.


"I wanted to come to Iowa State for the last few years because I wanted to go somewhere that would make me the best," Patton said.


Last October, Patton took his official visit to Ames – it was the Texas A&M homecoming game and the 34-3 loss was not pretty for the Cyclones.  


Patton said what he witnessed didn't discourage him; he made his college decision based on potential.


"I'm a believer," Patton said. "All we have to do is have a breakthrough season and make more people believers. Some people doubt us, but we believe in each other."

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