Publisher's Notes: Every weekday until the LSU football team reports for Fall Camp on Sunday, Aug. 4, TSD will unveil another player in our top 50 Tigers for the 2013 season. We arrived at this list by combining individual rankings from TSD's Austin Cooper, Ben Love and Hunter Paniagua. For example, a player who received a No. 1 vote got 50 points, a No. 2 vote got 49 points, and so on. Every player who received votes had his points totaled across all three individual lists, and the result was our final TSD ranking. All players, including incoming signees, were eligible for selection.
No. 38 – DT Quentin Thomas
The only non-true freshman to come off the board this week, Thomas, a redshirt sophomore, is hoping his experience will keep his nose out in front of all the newcomers that play his position. At 6-foot-3 and 294 pounds, Thomas has great size to man a defensive tackle spot despite a lack of on-field experience. He entered spring camp as the team's third defensive tackle, in line behind only starters Anthony Johnson and Ego Ferguson.
But, with first-year players Maquedius Bain, Greg Gilmore and Christian Lacouture entering the mix at defensive tackle, Thomas will have to keep pushing the issue to maintain his status as a rotational player, someone who in Brick Haley's system typically plays a lot of football. He made a nice statement in the spring game, where Thomas finished with three tackles, 2.5 for loss and half a sack.
By The Numbers
Thomas' highest ranking: 28th
Thomas' lowest ranking: Not Ranked
Why this ranking is too high
In his one season as a letter winner in 2012, Thomas played in just three games and registered only one tackle. Clearly he's not a proven commodity at this point in his career. Just like the incoming freshmen, he'll have to learn on the job this fall. But, unlike those newbies, Thomas is coming up on his third year on campus. Sometimes that makes a player waiting in the wings seasoned. Sometimes that just means the player can't hack it. With Thomas it's too early to tell which one it is yet.
Why this ranking is too low
For all his inexperience in between the lines, Thomas has at least been in the LSU system for the past two seasons, learning the techniques and defensive nuances espoused by Haley and coordinator John Chavis. Plus, LSU does have a noted track record of churning out talented defensive linemen, even ones who've waited their turns in line behind other, older defensive linemen. Thomas has a chance to be that next guy, with the necessary size and strength to do the job.
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View TSD's Top 50 to date
No. 38 - Quentin Thomas
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