The University of Memphis basketball program is keeping the top local prospect at home for the second year in a row.
Melrose High School (Memphis, Tenn.) star Adonis Thomas committed to the Tigers live on ESPNU Thursday. The 6-foot-6, 205-pound small forward is rated No. 3 in MaxPreps.com's 2011 Top 100. He picked head coach Josh Pastner's program over Arkansas, Florida, Tennessee and UCLA.
"Coach Pastner and his staff were great," Thomas told the national audience on ESPNU. "They recruited me hard. They have great fan support and I will love playing with those players. It was a good fit for me."
White Station guard Joe Jackson was the top prospect in Memphis a year ago and also elected to stay at home to play for the Tigers.
As a junior, Thomas led Melrose to a 37-4 record and Tennessee's Class AAA state title. The Golden Wildcats finished the season ranked No. 10 nationally. His season averages included 18.0 points, 11.2 rebounds, 3.8 blocks, 3.2 steals and 2.8 assists per game.
"He is a great human being and knows how to treat people," Melrose head coach Jermaine Johnson said of his star. "He has an insatiable desire to work. If you had a daughter you would want him to marry her. He is just an outstanding kid and really wants to make other players around him better."
Thomas spent much of his summer with the United States under-17 team that captured a gold medal at the FIBA World Championship in Germany. In 13 games with the USA over the past two summers, he has posted averages of 11.2 points and 4.9 rebounds per game.
With Thomas' commitment to Memphis, the top 11 prospects and 21 of the top 25 in the senior class have made verbal commitments and are expected to sign next month.