"I went up against him at 'Bama," he said. "I beat him, but I must admit he's pretty damn good."
This past Firday, Cotton's Tuscaloosa (Ala.) Central Falcons hosted Thomas' McCalla (Ala.) McAdory Jackets and while McAdory won the game, who won the battle of interior stars?
"The whole time we were playing, I was asking him, 'how may tackles have you made?'" Cotton said after the contest. "He changed sides and I asked him why he moved and he said it was the coaches.
"It was the reason I was playing guard."
Cotton reports finding a weakness in Thomas early on, and he felt that he was the better talent on this day.
"I had to just beat him," he said. "I stood him up a lot and he didn't make many tackles."
Thomas also felt that he won, though he admitted Cotton was a tough matchup.
"Yeah, he's strong, but I got him," he said.
Scout recorded all 20 reps in which the two lined up against one another, and you can judge for yourself below.
Cotton, who ranks as a four-star offensive tackle prospect in the class of 2015, is sporting No. 76 in red. Thomas, a three-star in the class of 2014, is sporting No. 34 in white.