Kentucky’s new running backs coach and special teams coordinator Jemal Singleton’s journey to Lexington came with the assist of an old friend. The former Cincinnati Bengals assistant has worked with Kentucky’s defensive coordinator Brad White twice, first at Air Force, Singleton’s alma mater, and later on the Indianapolis Colts staff; in fact, in the press release announcing Singleton’s hiring, Mark Stoops said White was the one to recommend him for the job.
“We are excited to welcome Jemal Singleton to our program,” Stoops said. “He came highly recommended from (UK defensive coordinator) Brad White, who I highly respect, as they worked together in the NFL. After I did the research on him, saw his background, and visited with him, it was a no-brainer.”
Singleton played at Air Force from 1996-98, rushing for 941 yards and four touchdowns in the Falcons’ triple option attack.. After graduation, he worked his way up to running backs coach and was still on staff when Brad White joined in 2010 to coach the inside linebackers. After stops at Oklahoma State and Arkansas, Singleton reunited with White in Indianapolis in 2016 to coach the running backs, helping Frank Gore rush for almost 2,000 yards in two seasons. Two years ago, he came to Lexington to watch Benny Snell in UK’s Pro Day and was impressed by his former coworker’s new digs.
“Brad White is a guy that I respect and have worked with in the past and know what he’s been doing down here,” Singleton said. “The fact that Brad White was here, we worked together with the Indianapolis Colts and actually back at my alma mater, the [Air Force] academy, to start and just listening to him talk and the structure of things, it was like, man, they’ve got it going on down there. And when this opportunity presented itself, it really made me say, hey, maybe it’s time to get back into college ball and get back to something that deep down, you truly love.”
Pretty cool. We’ll have more on Singleton throughout the afternoon, but to tide you over, here are some pictures of him during his playing days at Air Force: