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Heading into his second season, Nick Singleton is leading by example

Penn State’s sophomore running back is leading by example this spring.



Penn State running back Nick Singleton, Penn State football
© Dan Rainville / USA TODAY NETWORK

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — A season ago, a former five-star running back and No. 1 player in Pennsylvania took the nation by storm as early as Week 2 and eventually became Penn State’s first 1,000-yard rusher since Mile Sanders in 2018. Now, heading into his second season as a star Penn State running back, Nick Singleton looks to shine even brighter than he did in 2022. Though he is soft-spoken, Singleton chooses to lead by example as one of the Nittany Lions’ top offensive standouts on and off the football field.

Heading into year two, Nick Singleton looks to shine even brighter

Even before Singleton stepped onto the grass at Beaver Stadium, he was already considered one of the top running backs in the Big Ten by Penn State football fans. From 2019 through 2021, the Nittany Lions failed to see a running back break 1,000 yards, and from 2020-2021, a Penn State running back only rushed for 100 yards in a game one time (at Michigan, 2020).

Last year, despite many questions surrounding the Nittany Lions’ offensive line, the wideouts, their two freshman running backs, and more, the former top-ranked running back in the 2022 class rushed for over 1,000 yards and saw numerous 100-yard performances. With the help of Singleton and fellow true freshman back Kaytron Allen, the Penn State football offense became one of the best in the Big Ten, helping lead the program to its second-ever Rose Bowl win, its fourth 11-win season since 2016, and more.

All said and done, Nick Singleton carried the football 156 times for 1,061 yards and 12 touchdowns throughout his 2022 campaign.

Despite his quiet nature, Penn State’s star running back is looking to lead by example in 2023

Nick Singleton is a naturally quiet person, yet is stepping into the spotlight as one of the team’s leaders this fall. According to Singleton, he is trying to become more of a vocal leader in 2023 while still remaining true to his ‘lead by example’ style.

Kaytron [Allen] he talks a little bit more [than me],” Singleton told the media on Tuesday. “I’m trying to obviously be more vocal to my teammates, but I really lead by example personally.”

When asked about how he chooses to lead by example, Nick Singleton stated that “I do what I’m told — I listen to my coaches, you see me in the weight room; I really just grind,” he explained. “I just get extra work in, and players see that, and they try to be like that. That is the expectation that we are trying to be like.”

Singleton also knows that actions aren’t always enough at Penn State

Ahead of his sophomore season, Nick Singleton knows that — while actions will always speak louder than words — his words have a significant impact on the Penn State football locker room.

“I feel like if you are more vocal to your teammates, they will respect you more,” Singleton stated. “They will hear you out, and they will want to be like that.”

Singleton also stated that, while he was more of a vocal leader in high school, he has yet to reach that status as a college football player. During the remainder of the spring sessions, Singleton will need to step up as a significant team leader — being a Penn State football star is a full-time job, and it doesn’t end when the team walks off the field on Saturdays.

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