Penn State has a recent history of drafting uber-athletes, and the university has one of the best conditioning programs in football. Couple that with a history of recruiting phenomenal backs – most recently Saquon Barkley and Journey Brown – and there is a lot of excitement for their freshman Nick Singleton.
Nick Singleton (10) RB— Chuck Losey (@CoachCLosey) July 13, 2022
365 Clean@NickSingletonn @PSULawnBoyz @GarageStrength pic.twitter.com/ZwDblK7ZSc
The top back in the class of 2022, Singleton played his high school ball at Governor Mifflin in Reading, Pennsylvania. Singleton took official visits to Notre Dame, Alabama, Texas A&M, and Penn State. He had offers from 34 schools in total.
As a senior, Singleton rushed for 2,049 yards and 41 TDs, adding four receptions for 98 yards and a pair of scores. He returned two kicks for a 57-yard average and recorded an interception on defense. His 12.42 yards a carry helped lead his team to a Pennsylvania 5A state quarterfinal appearance.
Singleton was also a track star. He ran a 10.89 100-yard and a 22.89 200-yard as a junior. Singleton also competed in the shot put, the 4×100 relay, and recorded a 20’1.75” long jump as a sophomore.
I will do something different since he’s a freshman, and the tape is limited. I will include tweets showing multiple runs and things to love about Singleton.
The first run in the Kevin Coleman tweet highlights the vision, burst, and acceleration. Singleton sees the hole, decisively blows through it, and then knifes through the entire defense. On the second one, we see Singleton’s explosion. He gets to the corner, and it’s off to the races. The defenders appear to be running in quicksand, and Singleton blows by them all.
The vision in the third run – it’s special. Singleton appears to be caught in a scrum at the line. He explodes out of it, and nobody could even grab a ten-foot flag hanging from his belt. Singleton is GONE. The final run is nearly the same, except Singleton is caught in even more clutter at the line. He shoots out of the pile and another score. Thank you to Kevin from the Devy Royale for the video.
Nicholas Singleton tape is so much fun to watch. Kid is special man. pic.twitter.com/QTvDfsZaKh— Kevin (@Daboys_22) January 25, 2022
Felix Sharpe from campus2canton.com is my source for the second tweet, and it highlights the power and violence in which Singleton runs. The first run – I bet a few guys on the defense retired after this run. Singleton is leveling defenders in the second level and will not be denied the end zone. The second one showcases Singleton’s power and determination when he’s the ball carrier.
1.02 – RB Nick Singleton, @PennStateFball— Felix Sharpe (@sharpereview) July 10, 2022
He’s been comped to Nick Chubb by @247Sports’ @gabrieldbrooks.
He is the best size/speed combination in the class.
Timed by @campus2canton at 22.00 mph, amongst the best times in the NFL last year.
He’s a violent runner.
At 6’0” and 210 pounds, Singleton has the size already to be an NFL back, and we’ve seen he has the strength. He’s explosive and gets downhill in a hurry. When he plants his foot and takes off, it’s impressive.
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT
Singleton had limited pass-catching opportunities, so that will be the biggest question. Penn State knows how to get their lead back the ball, so the question should get answered quickly. Singleton runs a bit upright but lowers his shoulder through traffic to shrink his profile and creates leverage when contacted. He doesn’t get met upright and shoved over. His running style could lead to injuries, he’s never afraid of contact, and Singleton could suffer some wear and tear.
Few freshmen come into college with an opportunity to produce immediately; Singleton may have that shot. Keyvone Lee is the incumbent starter and was solid last season – tallying over 500 yards and 15 receptions in a limited lead role – but he’s a massive back with little explosive play ability. With time, Singleton could carve a role and be the lead back. Sort of like how TreVeyon Henderson and Ohio State did last season.
Singleton is the top prospect in the class, even in Superflex. I like a few of the QBs, but Singleton has the potential to be the next great back. Bijan Robinson in 2023, Henderson in 2024, and Singleton in 2025.
He is getting top-ten buzz in Devy drafts and even has the potential to affect your C2C scoring this season. If you want Singleton, he will cost a bunch, but his price is lower now than ever will be again – barring catastrophic disappointment!
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