By Kevin Sweeney
Today may be National Waffle Day, but the talk of college basketball today will be focused on Pancake.
Another impact player became available for this season, as star shooting guard Pancake Thomas will graduate and transfer out of the Hartford basketball program, according to Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. The 6-3 Thomas was second in the America East in scoring last season, averaging 18.9 points per game.
This has become the new reality for mid-major programs. With graduate transfers becoming so popular, mid-major stars are now looking to graduate as soon as possible in order to open up as many doors as possible for the future. A player with the talent of Thomas may get more professional opportunities by shining on a bigger stage than he would have at Hartford, where his final season would have likely gained little fanfare or scouting. While Thomas’s decision puts Hartford coach John Gallagher into a difficult position, it is also the right move for Thomas’s future.
Thomas will likely receive interest from high-major programs. When hot, Pancake can put as many points as anyone in the country. He put up over 35 points 3 times last season. He is also an excellent 3-point shooter (43% last season) and a good rebounder for his size (6.4 per game). While I am just speculating, I anticipate that he will receive interest from schools such as Purdue, Rutgers, and other “Power 5” programs, while also receiving strong interest from powerhouse mid-major and A-10 programs. Thomas is from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, so I wonder if Thomas would gravitate towards SEC programs.