Lane Thomas Duking it Out

By Richard Kent
Updated: May 7, 2006

NEW JERSEY—It was by far the easiest choice.Go to Duke and let the reputation carry his career.The tougher decision would have been Rutgers.His home State University and a Program desparately in need of a star.Thomas would have been a household name in New Jersey for year.Just like Phil Sellers.

Thomas is one of the top 20 high school players in America and was the best unsigned player until last Thursday.
It was always Duke and Rutgers in no special order.He visited bothe.He went to countless games at the RAC at Rutgers.His girlfriend will be running track there.There were signs in the stand at every game he went to.Come To Rutgers.Be Our Star.Show Us Some Love.
At Duke he was often an afterthought during the recruiting process.He may not even start next year.He would have played 40 minutes a game at Rutgers.By the time he is a sophomore Coach K. will have recruited over him.At Rutgers he would have been the man.Just like Sellers was.Sellers spoke to Thomas at length but it never swayed him.
Florida and Louisville entered the fray for a while but it was never real.He was always going to Duke.He just couldn’t tell Rutgers that.He had an uncle in his life that was calling the shots and he wanted Duke.That was the biggest influence.
Thomas is a smart kid.He will be a success in life.He may play in the NBA.He will never be a star at Duke.Too much competition.
At Rutgers he would have been the man.The newspapers would have covered his every move.The Big East would have recognized him.And like Sellers he would have brought the Scarlet Knights to the NCAA’s.
Lance we wish you the best.You deserve it.We hope you get your degree at Duke and od what you want for the rest of your life.
But we think you did your State wrong.They wanted you.It is a State that gives back.many star athletes have found careers in far different fields after playing in New Jersey.
Some kid will have the guts to choose Rutgers over Duke,North Carolina,Connecticut,Notre Dame,etc.Then the rest will follow.The Eugene Harveys of this world.Copeland,Bailey and Hinson came to Rutgers after Sellers.RU is a tough sell but it doesn’t have to be.It is a great school.Not that far away from Duke.It will happen some day.Just not last week.