Peach State Linebacker on Orange Radar

New prospects enter the radar late in the process all the time. The 2014 recruiting cycle is no different, and Syracuse has found a new target at linebacker in Suwanee (Ga.) Collins Hills OLB Jonathan Thomas. He discusses interest from the Orange, the status of an offer and more inside.

Linebacker is a big position of need for Syracuse, especially with Jason Cabinda flipping to Penn State. New targets are bound to come onto the radar given that scenario. One that has popped up recently is Suwanee (Ga.) Collins Hills linebacker Jonathan Thomas.

"It started Thursday night," Thomas said. "That's when they first contacted me. I think they've been talking to my coach for a while now. I talked to Eric White and some other recruit DM'd (direct message) me on Twitter. Then coach (Clark) Lea the linebackers coach, I called him. We were just talking about how they're interested in me and how we want to work things out."

Thomas' talent is coveted by Syracuse. The only reason an offer hasn't come is because the Peach State standout is trying to get his academics in order.

"They're waiting for me to get eligible by next semester," Thomas said. "Then they can give me a scholarship. I have a 1.9 (grade point average) right now. But this semester currently I'm holding a 3.0. We're just trying to bring it up to get to eligibility.

"I'm taking my school work seriously this year. My freshman and sophomore year, my head wasn't on straight because I didn't think I'd be playing any sport in college. I wasn't playing football my freshman and sophomore year."

Syracuse shifting their conference alignment to the ACC has helped the Orange get exposure down south. It has allowed Thomas to see them play on a number of occasions.

"I'm liking it so far," Thomas said. "My mom and I have been doing research on the school. I've been following them because they're in the ACC. They're on TV almost every week so I've been watching them. It's a good academic school too I want to go up and watch a game before the season's over. I'm trying to work that out."

Syracuse isn't the only school who has recognized Thomas' talents.

"Cincinnati came down this weekend to watch my game," Thomas said. "Old Dominion has been calling. Virginia and Louisiana Tech have shown interest. Those are the only schools that my coach has told me about because he doesn't want me to get distracted from the season. He said there are more schools. No offers yet."

Should Thomas pick up an offer from one or more schools, it would be a monumental moment for the senior linebacker.

"It would be a dream come true," Thomas said. "I'm just blessed. To have a chance to play at a university and go to school for free. I know not everybody has that opportunity, so it would be a great feeling when I have that."

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