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SUNDAY, JANUARY 28, 2007
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Decatur’s Thomas commits to UAB

By Brooke Milam
bmilam@decaturdaily.com · 340-2460

A steady presence on Decatur High’s offensive line for the past three years, 6-foot-3, 280-pound senior Caleb Thomas, said he’s glad to be done with the recruiting process and has announced his plans to play for UAB next season.

The Blazers offered Thomas a football scholarship Wednesday, and he committed the same day. He plans to sign Feb. 7, which is the first day NCAA Division I football programs can sign recruits to letters of intent.

“I feel like I’ve made a real good choice,” Thomas said, while visiting Birmingham on Saturday. “I’m pretty excited. I’m glad to be down here.”

Thomas will play in Conference USA for first-year Blazers head coach Neil Callaway, who served as Georgia’s offensive coordinator and line coach the past six seasons.

After he received interest from SEC schools early in the recruiting process, the Blazers came into the picture late because of UAB’s coaching change.

But Thomas said he had several reasons the program appealed to him over Arkansas State, Troy, Jacksonville State and Tennessee Tech, which
were still options near the end.

“The distance — it’s close,” he said. “And I liked the school — it’s a really good school and a great coaching staff.”

Thomas made The Daily all-area team and landed honorable mention all-state his junior and senior seasons.

The Red Raiders posted a 23-10 mark in Thomas’ three years as a starter.

He was named all-region three times, participated in the North/South all-star game following his junior season, was a Wendy’s Heisman representative, and graded out 90 percent at right tackle as a senior.

“Every coach that looked at him this year was impressed with how well
he finishes,” Decatur
High coach Jere Adcock said.

“Caleb’s not satisfied with just getting the job done. He wants to get it done with an exclamation point.”

Thomas was voted a permanent team captain by his peers this season, an award the Decatur coaching staff considers the highest honor a Red Raiders football player can receive.

“The greatest thing about Caleb is the kind of character he has,” Adcock said. “To me, that’s his greatest attribute.”

In addition to athleticism and leadership, Adcock said, Thomas also was appealing to colleges because of his membership in the National Honor Society.

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