Gumpert getting early looks

The crop of prospects that will headline Louisiana's talent pool for 2010 is taking shape, and one running back that is moving his name up the list is St. Thomas More athlete Thomas Gumpert.

Lafayette's Thomas Gumpert was pegged as one of the state's top junior backs heading into the season. And, after running off an eight win season before losing to West Monroe in the regional finals, the 6-foot, 185-pound prospect did not disappoint.


"We did pretty well this year," Gumpert said. "Really because of team needs, I was one of the primary blocking backs, having to get in and play a lot of fullback. I played a little receiver at times, as well.


"I wrapped things up with 39 carries for 211 yards and two touchdowns," added Gumpert. "I also played some special teams, where I had five kick returns for a 30.2 yard return average as well as ten tackles. Next season I get to move to tailback, and in the spring we should be working on some more stuff where I can get looks at receiver."


Now that the season is behind him, Gumpert is turning his focus to his recruitment.


"I have been getting a lot of stuff from different schools," he said. "LSU is sending stuff every week, as well as Notre Dame, Clemson, UCLA, Illinois, Stanford, TCU and Purdue. Those are the main ones. Some schools are looking at me as a tailback and others as a defensive back, so I am just looking forward to any chance that I can get."


Being a stone's throw from Baton Rouge and the Tigers' campus, the St. Thomas More-standout holds LSU in high regards.


"I really like the atmosphere," Gumpert said. "It is a place where you can enjoy school and athletics. I have been over to campus a few times for academic events, and I know they set some pretty high standards.


"I have also been over for some games, including the Tulane game this season," he added. "Meeting the coaches and seeing how things work on their end was pretty cool. The LSU camp is definitely a priority and at the top of my list for the summer, as well as the upcoming Junior Day. I am looking forward to both of them."


Though most local talent is typically drawn to the Tiger program after being immersed in the Bayou Bengal culture throughout childhood, it is not the case with Gumpert.


"I moved over here from California a few years ago," he said. "My dad was in the military, so we moved around a lot as a kid. That kind of makes a lot of different schools on an even playing field right now, and I am keeping my options open. I am going to talk to some coaches in the spring and see where I stand based off of those conversations."


Note: Gumpert runs a 4.47 40-yard dash, has a 33 ½ inch vertical, power cleans 300 pounds, squats 370 pounds and claims a 10.8 in the 100-yard dash.


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