Thomas McCollum, who hails from upstate New York, played junior "B" hockey in Wheatfield before signing with the Guelph Storm in the fall of 2006.
2006-07: McCollum began the season expected to be the backup to Storm veteran netminder Jason Guy, but it quickly became apparent that McCollum would be the No. 1 goaltender. Winning academic accolades, he set a Guelph record for number of shutouts by a rookie netminder (five). In 55 regular season games, McCollum had a 26-18-3-7 record, with a 2.39 GAA and .918 save percentage. McCollum was named to the OHL All-Star Game and was nominated for OHL Goaltender of the Year.
2007-08: McCollum continued his excellent play. In 51 games, he was 25-17-3-3, with a 2.50 GAA and a .914 save percentage. He was Guelph's Academic Player of the Year. Additionally, McCollum was named OHL Goaltender of the month in December 2007.
2008-09: McCollum split his season between the Guelph Storm and Brampton Battalion. He also played for USA team during the world junior tournament. Although his shaky play in that tournament raised questions about his ability to deal with adversity, he bounced back and finished his season as a top goaltender in the league. It was his best season in the OHL statistically. He finished the year with an overall 2.11 GAA and a .927 save percentage. Even more impressive, McCollum put up a 1.94 GAA after his trade to Brampton. His team finished their season in fourth place overall thanks in large part to McCollum’s stellar play down the stretch.
2009-10: McCollum split time between Detroit's affiliates in his first pro season. In 6 ECHL games with the Toledo Walleye, the netminder had a 2-1-0 record with a 4.48 goals against average and .864 save percentage. He finished with a 10-16-2 record for Grand Rapids in 30 AHL appearances with a 3.48 goals against average and .881 save percentage.
2010-11: McCollum continued to struggle at the pro level, being sent down to the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye roughly 20 games into the year. Appeared in 22 games for the Griffins, posting a 3.33 GAA and .879 save percentage. McCollum improved his game upon being sent down to the ECHL, putting up a 2.76 GAA and .909 save percentage.
2011-12: McCollum shuffled between AHL Grand Rapids and the Toledo Walleye of the ECHL in his third pro season. After opening the season with the Walleye, he was called up by the Griffins and won four of seven starts between November 12 and December 3 before returning to Toledo. He was re-called by Grand Rapids at the end of December and remained with the Griffins except for a two-game stint with Toledo in early March. McCollum was 11-16 with a 3.49 goals against and .891 save percentage in 28 games with Grand Rapids. He was 6-8 in 15 games with Toledo and had a 2.62 goals against and .909 save percentage. Neither the Griffins nor the Walleye reached the playoffs in their respective leagues.
2012-13: McCollum combined with fellow Detroit prospect Petr Mrazek to give Grand Rapids one of the AHL's top goaltending tandems in his fourth pro season. The former first round pick played in 31 games and was 18-11-2 with 2 shutouts and posted a 2.63 goals against and .904 save percentage. The Griffins finished first in the Midwest Division and captured the Calder Cup championship. McCollum did not see any action in the playoffs as Mrazek started all 24 games. He was tendered a qualifying offer by the Red Wings in July, 2013 before signing an AHL contract with Grand Rapids.
Talent- McCollum demonstrates excellent rebound control, stays square to the shooter, and has a great glove hand. He needs to work on his mental game, finding a way not to get rattled after allowing a soft goal.
Though McCollum lost his starting job in Grand Rapids to AHL rookie Petr Mrazek, he will still have the opportunity to compete with Jared Coreau for the back-up job with the Griffins after being re-signed by Detroit to a one-year contract.