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Norcross, Ga., forward Lance Thomas narrowed his list to four schools last week; says Louisville tells him they "really want" him

Norcross, Ga., power forward Lance Thomas recently narrowed his list of schools to four - Louisville, Miami, Florida and USC - and says the Cardinals' staff have told him what kind of impact he can make at U of L.

The University of Louisville basketball staff jumped in the recruiting mix with Lance Thomas later than some of the others.

But the Cardinals have more than made up ground, making the final four of Thomas' schools along with Florida, Miami and USC. Thomas told Cardinal Authority said the U of L staff is "still making up ground."

"They knew they had to catch up but they're still doing it and that's why they're on (the list)," Thomas said. "Louisville came in late, told me they really wanted me to come to Louisville and told me what kind of an impact I would have on their program.

"They've been honest and they're really made up ground."

The 6-foot-10 Thomas said he narrowed his list to four schools because with more than 30 offers he didn't want to waste the time of the schools he knew he wasn't interested in the rest of the summer.

Thomas said his plan is to make official visits before making a decision.

"Those were the schools that I want to see and those were the ones I felt like we're making me a priority," Thomas said. "This has all been really exciting for me. It's what everybody works for."

While U of L did get in late, assistant coach Kenny Johnson and head coach Rick Pitino have been in constant contact with Thomas. He said it "means a lot to me," that Pitino was so involved in the recruiting process.

"I kind of figured I must be important for him to be paying so much attention to me," Thomas said. "They said I'm a priority."

Thomas said the Cardinals told him they were looking for someone "just like me to come in and be a big wing." He's ranked as the No. 15 power forward in the country and had a big summer for Team United.

"They talk to me a lot and keep telling me how much they want me at Louisville," he said. "They said they need a big wing like me and think I can come in and be the guy who makes an impact for them."

Thomas didn't play the final evaluation period of the summer but did participate at the Nike Skills Academy in Los Angeles this week. Louisville got involved in the process after Pitino saw Thomas and his teammate Alex O'Connell during the first week of the month in Augusta, Ga.

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