The all-time rushing leader in Idaho football history, Joel Thomas was a key figure for the Vandal football squad from 1993-98. Thomas was the leading rusher and scorer for the Vandals in 1996 and 1998. He ran for 1,229 yards and 16 touchdowns and scored 100 total points in 1998 when he led the Vandals to their first bowl appearance – and victory – in a 42-35 upset of Southern Miss at the Humanitarian Bowl. That same season, he also was chosen the Big West co-MVP. His 966 all-purpose plays, 765 career rushing attempts, 3,929 rushing yards and 51 rushing touchdowns are all Idaho school records. His 323 career points, 52 career touchdowns and 4,737 all-purpose yards rank second all-time at Idaho. He has the third-best single game rushing performance in school history, a 272-yard performance in a 64-19 victory over Boise State. His 90-yard romp in that game is also the second-longest rush in Idaho history. Thomas was a two-time All-Big West First Team selection, two-time Big West Player of the Week, and a Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine Game invitee. He has gone on to a successful coaching career, including two seasons as the co-offensive coordinator and running backs coach at Idaho. He is currently the running backs coach at Purdue.