Thomas lost playing time at the end of the season due to injury and then the emergence of Garrett Grayson in Steve Fairchild's failed attempt to keep his job. Fairchild was fired and Alabama offensive coordinator Jim McElwain was brought in, prompting Thomas to reevaluate his career.
Early reports had Thomas looking at the Vanderbilt Commodores, but Thomas said he hadn't decided and was looking at all of his options. At North Carolina State, Thomas will need to sit out this fall due to NCAA transfer regulations, but he will have two years remaining starting in 2013. The Wolfpack lost Russell Wilson last season and Sean Glennon this season (he graduates while Wilson transferred to Wisconsin).
Bruins Nation, our UCLA blog, would greatly want to add Thomas to a quarterback situation that doesn't have a lot of depth to it. New coach Jim Mora could use a pick up like Thomas, who is a native of California. North Carolina State recruited Thomas while he was in high school.
Thomas says he spoke with new head coach Jim McElwain on several occasions but ultimately chose to move on and start fresh somewhere else:
"I sat down with Coach McElwain a few times and had a good talk with him, but in the end, I decided this was the right thing for me to do," Thomas said. "I needed a new start, and I am looking for that opportunity. When I committed to CSU, I never thought of Fairchild or the staff being fired, but it's a business. You can't go 3-9 three years in a row and expect to keep your job. That's real tough, but it's on us players. It was definitely a hard situation."
Thomas threw for 1,607 yards with seven touchdowns and eight interceptions in 2011.
The Colorado St. Rams have officially announced that quarterback Pete Thomas has withdrawn from school a week after news broke that he was considering a transfer. New Colorado State athletic director Jack Graham announced the withdrawal on Tuesday:
"We appreciate all that Pete gave to Colorado State University during his two years with us, and we wish him the best," said Graham.
According to the school's release, Thomas has been released from his scholarship and is "free to pursue other opportunities." That makes it sound as though Thomas has no limitations on where he can transfer to. The Vanderbilt Commodores had been rumored to be his destination when this news first broke last week. Thomas, at the time, said he was exploring his options.
New head coach Jim McElwain is now likely to go with Garrett Grayson, who had supplanted Thomas at the end of last season when Steve Fairchild was attempting to keep his job as head coach.
McElwain is ready to install an offense at Colorado State that is close to the one he ran as the Alabama Crimson Tide's offensive coordinator and Thomas might not be the best fit for it. Garrett Grayson took over for Thomas during the final games of the season when ex-coach Steve Fairchild was attempting to (unsuccessfully) save his job.
We'll see how McElwain handles this situation in the coming days and weeks during his first attempt at building the future of the Rams.