A year ago, fans had a faint idea of what Logan Thomas could potentially do.
This year, those wildest fantasies are going to be almost expected.
Following a terrific first-year as the Hokies starting quarterback, Thomas takes the reins of an offense that will lean heavily on his 6-foot-6, 260-pound frame.
“I think the guys look up to me, and I can still look up to my guys; they understand me, I understand them,” Thomas said. “It’s a team thing, a team game. But you follow that one person. And I’m honored to be that one person.”
A Google search of Thomas’ name attempts to complete the query with ‘NFL Draft.” His name has popped up on several Heisman Trophy watch lists and the comparisons to top-flight NFL quarterbacks aren’t going to slow down anytime soon.
Known for his low-key nature off the field, Thomas is still adjusting to life as a superstar in the football world.
“I’m not one to really go out and be in the limelight,” Thomas said. “It’s kind of weird to see myself on TV or have people come up to me and want to take pictures and get autographs. It’s still weird for me. I’m more of a homebody than anything else. I like to hide a little bit. But, it’s not bad.”
2011 marked the first year for Thomas’ quarterback coach Mike O’Cain as the gameday play caller for the Hokies. The switch from Bryan Stinespring to O’Cain worked flawlessly, as the Hokies posted a five-year high in total offense.
O’Cain, who has worked closely with Thomas since the start of Thomas’ freshman season, contends there is plenty of room for his quarterback to improve on his first season.
“At the time you would say, ‘(Thomas) looks pretty good doing that,’” O’Cain said. “But you see him now and you go back, and he wasn’t as good as he is now. I think he sees that, and it has helped him quite a bit.”
Entering last season, Thomas faced the unknown of being a starting quarterback as a redshirt-sophomore.
“It took about three weeks to fully understand what was going to be asked of me every single day, game in, game out, day in and day out,” Thomas said. “Once I kind of got a grasp of it, it made it a lot easier. Things started slowing down. It was one less thing I had to worry about.”
Thomas will be without Danny Coale and Jarrett Boykin, his top-two receivers from 2011. Marcus Davis, D.J. Coles, Dyrell Roberts and Corey Fuller will be expected to fill the void.
“Our top four right now, there’s really no step off; pretty good fluidity with those guys,” Thomas said. “But I feel pretty confident with those guys, I’ve been with every one of them for three years now. It’s been good. I’m excited to see what they can do and what this offense can do.”
Unlike last season, Thomas enters the season with the confidence only a year of experience can provide. Davis noticed that change and likes the mindset of the entire offense.
“You have to have confidence to play the game, so right now the confidence is through the roof throughout the whole room,” Davis said. “Not to be cocky or big-headed, it’s just the fact that we know what we can do and it’s just the fact of us going out and actually doing it and prove what we can do.”
Davis, who himself is a former high school quarterback, knows the value of a star quarterback and how the wide receivers can improve their stock under Thomas’ microscope.
“He brings the attention, and we’re his supporting cast,” Davis said. “It’s a win-win for us. It helps us out big time. He gets us the ball, we make him look good and we win, that’s going to keep bringing in attention.”