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NCAA Basketball Conference USA BasketballMemphis Tigers

Memphis Sophomore Adonis Thomas Moving to Small Forward Position This Season

Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

Last season did not end as expected for Memphis Tigers Adonis Thomas. In January, Thomas had to have surgery after an MRI revealed he had loose “flap” of cartilage in his left ankle. At the time, Thomas, a 6-6 former McDonald’s All-American, was Memphis’ third-leading scorer with 9.7 points per game and ranked third on the team in minutes with 26.3. It was thought that his season was over. However, Thomas did return in March during the CUSA tournament, but played far less minutes after missing fifteen games.

Thomas has been working hard especially on his shooting. The extra work is paying off. He won the 3-point shooting contest at Memphis Madness last Friday and has consistently buried shots in practice drills and scrimmages.

He has a post-practice shoot around that he started last season before the ankle injury: 10 mid-range shots at seven different spots on the floor; five 3-pointers from seven different spots; then free throws until he’s made 10 in a row.

“I (shoot) before (practice) and after,” Thomas said to the Commercial Appeal. “It was a habit I did last year before I got hurt with (former Tigers assistant) coach (Jack) Murphy, and it really helped improve my shooting.”

Last basketball season, Thomas played the power forward position. This season, he’s moving to small forward. He will operate more on the perimeter, where his quickness and athleticism will create mismatches. This will give him a chance to play at his natural position on the wing.

Thomas decided to return to school for his sophomore season after considering entering the 2012 NBA Draft. He was projected as a possible late first-round pick but decided to stay at Memphis after researching his draft position.

 

Be sure to follow Patosha Jeffery on Twitter: @patoshajeffery