Originally written on Fox Sports Detroit  |  Last updated 10/22/14
EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Lawrence Thomas calls himself a child of God and a mommas boy, and does so with a smile. Thomas is as sure of those claims as he was of choosing Michigan State -- which was the only school the state's top high school senior, out of the Detroit Renaissance, visited in 2010. What's up for debate is what position Thomas should play. The 6-foot-3, 283-pound redshirt freshman began his college career at linebacker but was moved to defensive end during preseason practices. Two weeks ago, Spartans coach Mark Dantonio decided to put Thomas at fullback and tight end on offense. He was a tremendous defensive player in high school, Dantonio said. He also was an outstanding offensive player. But because of his injuries, because of the depth we have at defensive end right now, hes not been able to get on the field as regularly as wed want him to. I think hes got a lot of skills, so I just think we need to play guys, get them on the field and get them game experience. Where they play in the end as their career unfolds is really how they fit into the scheme of things. "He could play defense on Saturday. He could play in offense on Saturday. I want to make sure were taking advantage of our players skills. Dantonio expects Thomas to eventually become a fixture at defensive end, where William Gholston, a second-team All-Big Ten pick last year as a sophomore, is groomimg him. Me and Will were friends even before college, Thomas said. And hes taken me under his wing here by showing me extra drills, studying with me and doing whatever he can to help me. What does Thomas enjoy doing most on a football field? Im a pretty physical dude, he said. I love to put my opponent on his back. Then I know I did my job. Whether Im doing that with a bull rush or a block, thats what I like best. Defense is where my heart is at, but Im comfortable either side of the ball. Coach Dantonio said he wants to get me on the field as much as possible, and I love it on offense. Thomas said he will eventually split practice time 50-50, but now spends more time on offense to catch up with the plays, terminology and technique. Although Dantonio still sees Thomas playing defense in the years to come, hes not listed on the three-deep at either end position. He shares the backup fullback spot with Trevon Pendleton behind starter Niko Palazeti. Starting ends Gholston and Marcus Rush are underclassmen standouts, and those playing behind them are non-seniors, too. Unless Gholston jumps to the NFL after this season, nothing is opening up there. Palazeti, a sophomore, just received the starting-fullback nod. He's a solid player but doesn't have the position lock the ends hold. With multi-talented junior Dion Sims starting at tight end, fullback looks to be the most likely spot for L.T., as teammates call him, to make his mark. He caught a seven-yard pass against Central Michigan and a 10-yarder against Notre Dame. Hes a remarkable athlete for his size, even had a 76-yard punt in high school. Dantonio said, He goes between 280 and 300 -- depends on how hes eating. L.T. is listed at 295 pounds. I just weighed in at 283, Thomas said with a chuckle. I dont know where this 295 comes from. His progress was slowed last year by a season-ending shoulder injury suffered in preseason camp. Im a child of God, said Thomas. Of course, it was frustrating. But I talked to God and did not let it stress me out. Thomas said he attended a football camp at Ohio State but made his only official visit to Michigan State. The coaches are honest here and made me feel at home, Thomas said. And Im a Mommas boy, and didnt want to leave her behind by going far away. Shes very proud of seeing me on a college football field, and I want to show my little brother what hard work can do. Alante is 13, and already winning MVP trophies in Little League football. Players who receive as much attention as Thomas did in high school tend to focus more on themselves. His attitude is refreshing. It revolves around family, faith and teammates. Rather than worrying about finding his niche, Thomas is more concerned about learning the offense in order to help his team.

LeBron: Greatest achievement would be parade in Cleveland

Curt Schilling: Bumgarner's postseason is the best ever

Phil Jackson: Knicks ‘not ready for showtime’

Titans WR: Mettenberger better than Big Ben at same stage

Michael Vick: Starting at QB again is a dream come true

Red Sox to reportedly target Pablo Sandoval in offseason


Alex Rodriguez's season-long MLB ban comes to an end

Madison Bumgarner pitches Giants to World Series title

Giants fans get rowdy celebrating World Series win

Roy Williams' response to criticism over academic scandal

Jerry Jones challenging Tony Romo to play Sunday?

Wizards make rapper Wale new 'creative liaison' for team

State Farm has hilarious response to recent NFL injuries

WATCH: Michael Jordan trashes President Obama's golf game

GALLERY: Best of sports-themed pumpkins

WATCH: The LeBron Nike spot we've been waiting for

Kobe Bryant’s Wikipedia page listed him with 0-1 MMA record

WATCH: Amar'e sings with Swift for in-arena video bit

WATCH: Randle offers money for massage in jailhouse video

Top storyline for each Week 9 NFL game

WATCH: Chevy guy bombs World Series presentation

WATCH: James Ennis throws down dunk of the season

Kris Humphries shares nasty photo of gruesome finger injury

WATCH: Joe Panik makes play of the game in Game 7

Spartans News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Curt Schilling praises Bumgarner

GALLERY: Best of sports pumpkins

Top storyline for each Week 9 game

Williams' response to criticism

WATCH: Chevy guy totally bombs

Bumgarner pitches Giants to title

Report: Cubs to hire Maddon as manager

Tom Brady talks Peyton Manning

Best Game 7s in World Series history

NFL, MLB spend on mid-term elections

Gurley suspended four games

Gordie Howe suffered stroke

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.