Purdue is looking to add to its point guard options. Kellon Thomas is searching for a new home.
It’s not as easy as that, but the former Southport guard has been granted his release from Kent State and will be eligible to play immediately as a graduate transfer.
The 5-11 Thomas, who averaged 12.3 points and 2.6 assists as a redshirt junior at Kent State, has already been in contact with Purdue assistant Jack Owens. He’ll likely take an official visit this month, though hasn’t yet set a date.
“They told me they need somebody to create for shooters and feed their bigs and play off screens,” Thomas said of Purdue. “(Owens) said that he liked that I was experienced and looked at my film and liked what I did last year. They are looking for a guy who can run the team.”
Purdue recruited Thomas some out of high school but never offered a scholarship.
Other schools that have inquired directly to Thomas or to his coaches include Minnesota, Northwestern, Seton Hall, Ball State, Duquesne, Georgia State, Illinois-Chicago, IUPUI and Jacksonville.
Thomas graduated from Southport in 2012 and redshirted his first season at Kent State. As a freshman, he averaged 6.5 points and 2.0 assists and averaged 5.0 points and 1.3 assists as a sophomore in 2014-15.
He started all 32 games as a junior, helping the Flashes to a 19-13 overall record (10-8 in the Mid-American Conference). Thomas was second on the team in scoring.
“It was a tough decision to go forward with (the transfer),” he said. “I actually started doing spring workouts for a week just to make sure if I wanted to do it. I had a good connection with the staff, but a lot of my really close friends were either graduating or leaving.”
Thomas hasn’t set any visits yet, although he anticipates that the Purdue visit will happen soon. Purdue has junior-to-be P.J. Thompson as a returner at point guard and incoming recruit Carsen Edwards also plays the position. The Boilermakers have made a habit out of grad transfer point guards, leaning on Jon Octeus in 2014-15 and Johnny Hill in 2015-16.
“I think I had a pretty good season,” Thomas said. “There’s some stuff I could have done better, but I definitely did establish myself.”
• Former Hamilton Southeastern guard Tyler Jenkins confirmed that he’s been granted his release from Lehigh. Jenkins, who graduated from HSE in 2014, played in all 32 games as a sophomore at Lehigh and averaged 2.0 points.
Call IndyStar reporter Kyle Neddenriep at (317) 444-6649.