Mnhockeyprospects.com- You recently committed to UMD, were there other schools you were looking at?
Jared Thomas- I grew up watching UMD and my family had season tickets. My parents both played sports here. My dad played football and my mom is a member of UMD’s Hall of Fame for basketball. I grew up here and always watched the Bulldogs, so I wanted to keep it in the family. I had my heart set on UMD, but I was willing to listen to other teams. UMD was the first to offer me a scholarship and I didn’t want to hesitate to take it.
MNHP- What are some things you’ll work on to be a better player at the next level?
Thomas- I think juniors next year will help a lot as I will be playing stronger and bigger kids that all have the skill to play at a high level. I need to get stronger and work on my quickness but I played a few games in the USHL and felt confident that I can do well down there.
MNHP- How was your stint down in Sioux City this past fall?
Thomas- Well, of the three games I played, we won two and lost one. It was a pretty fun time even know I did not get to play that much. I did play enough to get a good taste of what it’s like. I got a feel for the speed and strength of the game.
MNHP- So his past fall was pretty hectic for you, playing in the Elite League, the USHL, and High School.
Thomas- There was a lot of travel but it was worth it in the end as I think it will help me later on down the road. The Elite League helped me a lot, I felt I got a lot better and was able to pick up the speed of my game.
MNHP- Who’s an NHL player you pattern your game after?
Thomas- I have not really thought about that. I would probably have to say Pavel Datsyuk. He sees the ice so well. He has great vision and is not a selfish player as he’s always trying to find teammates. That’s what I try to play like. He would probably be my number one, but I would have to think about that.
MNHP- Goals for the rest of the season?
Thomas- Our goal is to get back to the State Tournament, but you know, win it this time! After finishing second two years in a row we really want it. I think we have the depth and the team to do it. We want to get over that hump and make a name for ourselves in history.
MNHP- How about a personal goal?
Thomas- I want to contribute at every level I play at. Hopefully come to UMD and play every night and be able to help the team.