football Edit

Nick Singleton on PSU: 'They really committed to me and my family early on'

Penn State added arguably its most important commitment of the class Tuesday evening in running back Nick Singleton.

A four-star prospect from outside Reading, Pa., James Franklin and his staff were the first Football Bowl Subdivision program to extend an offer to Singleton way back in July 2019. For more than two years, they spent hundreds of hours texting, calling and visiting with each other, and in the end, it was his connection to the staff that won out.

“The relationship with the whole coaching staff was a big part of it. It was amazing," Singleton said. "When I went up there for my official, it felt like home and my parents could see that, too. They felt like we were part of the family right from the start. Everyone treated us like family, which made it an easier choice.”

Related: Thomas Frank Carr breaks down the film for RB Nick Singleton

His offer came just a few weeks after Singleton camped with the Nittany Lion coaching staff for the first time in June 2019. That trip ended up being one of five true visits that he took to Penn State. That count doesn’t include his trip to Beaver Stadium in April to watch an open practice before the dead period ended.

“I’ve been up there so many times. I’ve lost count,” Singleton said. “I believe William & Mary offered first, which made Penn State my first big-time offer. They’ve been recruiting me hard ever since, so that made a big impact, too. They really committed to me and my family early on.”

Singleton called Penn State’s recruitment “a team effort from everyone there,” especially since last September, when coaches were able to start initiating conversations with 2022 prospects. However, it should also be noted that Franklin, who is active with all of Penn State’s top targets, may have been even a bit more active with this one.

“Coach Franklin has been calling me a lot. He reaches out most days, so just having him always reaching out and staying in contact really showed me how much of a priority I am for them,” Singleton said. “He constantly kept telling me that, as well, but he really showed that with how much he stayed in contact. He really showed me how much they want me at Penn State.”

Running backs coach Ja’Juan Seider also had a big impact, especially on Zoom. With no in person visits until recently, Seider made sure that Singleton still understood everything Penn State’s offense could do for him in the year’s to come.

“Coach Seider was really active with me on Zoom. He showed me a lot about their running schemes, their different plays that feature the running back. He also helped set me up with Noah Cain, and I really enjoyed talking to him and Journey Brown. Those guys showed me a lot."

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With that said, the wasn’t an easy decision. Earning nearly 40 scholarship offers, Singleton took official visits to Penn State, Alabama, Notre Dame, Texas A&M and Wisconsin in June. By the time he wrapped up his trip to South Bend, it was clear that the Fighting Irish had given him a reason to seriously consider leaving Pennsylvania.

“It was stressful, for sure. It was a hard decision, but I feel good about my decision,” Singleton said. “I feel good about Penn State and I think they have a ton to offer. My family helped me out a lot during this.”

In just eight games last season, Singleton rushed for 1,311 yards on 107 carries, averaging a very impressive 12.3 yards per rush. He also scored 22 touchdowns, leading Governor Mifflin to the PIAA Class 5A semifinals where they lost a heartbreaker to eventual state champion Pine-Richland, 48-45. Singleton ultimately earned all-state honors and even a spot in the All-American Bowl, which will be played in January.

Now that he’s committed, his focus turns to his upcoming season, where he hopes to take the Mustangs all the way in 2021. Helping Penn State’s currently committed players - many of whom he’s already close with - finish off the class strong is also a priority.

“I have a great relationship with those guys,” Singleton said, referring to the committed players. “They’ve been telling me forever now that they want me to be part of their offense. They have a big goals. They want to go for a national championship, and the best way to do that is to get as many great players as they can. They’re building the best class they can at Penn State and I’m excited to be part of that now.”


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