Some recruiting news broke on Twitter last night via Miner Illustrated, and a couple of other sources that UTEP is offering 2015, 6'8 forward Paul Thomas out of the Houston area.
Thomas is classified as a four star recruit by ESPN and the 13th overall player in the state of Texas, while Future 150 has him as the 15th best overall player in state, and 28th overall small forward in the nation.
Here is an excerpt from a scouts assessment of Thomas via Future 150:
"Thomas is a super long combo forward who can do just about everything on the floor. He can guard multiple positions on the floor due to his length and athleticism. He runs the floor extremely well and knows how to finish at the rim once he gets there. He is a great rebounder on both ends and has the handle to start the break once he gets it. He can also score on all three levels."
The Future 150 scout's assessment also rated Thomas as excellent, and good on all of his basketball tangibles, his intangibles boast an excellent rating.
Based off of some YouTube clips the kid looks to be the real deal, and someone that could step in and have a Vince Hunter like impact as a freshman.
Not only can the 6'8 forward dribble, he maybe able to be a matchup nightmare stretch four for the Miners as he showed a few times he can step back and pop. Also based of videos, to me Thomas could develop into a solid double-double player in Coach Floyd's system as he has a solid knack for getting to, and finishing around the rim.
The only stats I could find was his AAU summer stats from his Houston Hoops AAU team. Thomas averaged 5.1 points per game, and 3.7 rebounds, though shot 48 percent from the field, he played in 15 games averaging 15 minutes an outing.
Thomas would help UTEP immediately in the rebounding department, he grabbed six rebounds in his final AAU game against the Oakland Soldiers who boast Stephen Zimmerman, Ivan Rabb, Chimezie Metu, and fellow UTEP target Rex Pflueger.
The first video I saw he showed off a long wing span blocking jump shots, his mold reminds of a more athletic Roy Smallwood, both hail from the H-Town area.
I would think Thomas would be on top of the UTEP 2015 wish list with his defensive ability, I could see his offense translate into what John Bohannon did last year, I also think the kid has HUGE overall upside with the top notch staff UTEP has at is disposal.
Houston, Texas Tech, Memphis, and Western Kentucky all have offered, while Arizona has also shown interest. I would also expect his stock to rise nationally as the senior to be will play for Summercreek High in Humble, Texas this coming season.
In related recruiting news, UTEP also reached out to another big man, 2015 Center Christian Romine.
Romine is a 6'10 center from Mahomet, Illinois who Tweeted out that he spoke with UTEP assistant Ken Deweese.
Per Verbal Commits UTEP has offered, along with DePaul, Tulane, and Western Kentucky, and their composite ratings have him as a two star.
We all know UTEP will be going after size in the 2015 class after the guard heavy 2014 class, and as always UTEP is working hard to bring in immediate help to continue the emphasis of defense and rebounding within the front court.
2015 Summercreek (TX) F Paul Thomas has received an offer from UTEP #MinerStrong— Miner Illustrated (@MinerManiac) August 7, 2014
Had a great talk with Coach DeWeese from UTEP tonight!— Christian Romine (@ILSTARZ20) August 5, 2014