You ain’t gotta be a dope boy to have money.

– Rashad, ATL (2006)

I’m always partial to smaller receivers. Especially if one who hails from the same hometown as one of my all-time favorite slot receivers—Justin Hall, who played five seasons at Ball State in the MAC. Hall is just one of many examples of the criminally underrated talent that comes out of the Peach State every cycle. Indeed, current UGA head coach and CFB supervillain Kirby Smart mentioned how his program is fortunate to be located in a state where “so many guys are overlooked”.

Georgia Tech found one of those underrated gems in the 2023 class. Eric Singleton, a wide receiver from Douglasville, GA, finished his true freshman campaign with 48 receptions (on 82 targets) for 714 yards and six TDs (13.1 PPG). While build (5’11″, 173) might suggest that he’d be a slot player just like Justin Hall was, he actually primarily played on the boundary for the Hornets this past season. That’s probably partly because sophomore receiver Malik Rutherford held down the slot role but also partly because Singleton is just a stud.

If you’re like me, a College Football (CFB) degenerate, you might have feared that opposing teams would come calling for Singleton in the offseason, given the sheer amount of tampering that transpires right now. It would appear—for the time being at least—that the Hornets will retain the services of the breakout star for another season.

The Yellowjackets also retain the services of former Texas A&M Aggie Haynes King, who had a breakout year in 2023. The combination of him and Singleton paints a promising future for GT, which is good because they have somewhat of a tough schedule in 2024. The Yellowjackets play their in-state rivals, UGA, Notre Dame, Florida State, and Miami—though I should point out that the FSU game is in week zero, outside the scoring window for CFF.

While Singleton’s first year was promising, he’ll have to build on that to fully achieve CFF relevancy. To gain a better understanding of the outlook, let’s start by looking at the staff’s history. 

Coaching & System

While Josh Crawford was poached by the in-state rival this offseason, most of the staff from a year ago remains intact. That in itself is a victory for a program like GT coming off a breakout season.

Brent Key enters his sixth season with the program. He joined as the assistant head coach, run game coordinator, and OL coach in 2019 and served until 2023 when he was promoted to head coach. His only play-calling experience was as OC at UCF (2014-15).

His OC, Buster Faulkner, was poached from UGA’s staff in the 2023 off-season. Faulkner was a quality control analyst and QBs coach with the Dawgs. Before that, he served as the OC of Southern Miss (2019), Arkansas State (2016-18), Middle Tennessee (2011-15), and Murray State (2010).

The only notable stat line from Key’s time at UCF was Breshad Perriman’s 2014 season.

As for Faulkner, he had four 1,000-yard receivers in his repertoire from his time as OC. Quez Watkins led his Southern Miss team in 2019 with 64 receptions, 1,178 yards, and six scores. Arkansas State’s Kirk Merritt crossed the mark in 2018 with 83 catches for 1,006 yards and seven scores. And in 2015, Faulkner’s most notable season, the Blue Raiders produced two 1,000-yarders.

Middle Tennessee 2015 receiving leaders. Source: ESPN

Just to be clear, that is four 1,000-yard receivers in nine seasons. So I can’t say he’s a kingmaker at the position, but he is a coach you’ll want to be familiar with.

Eric Singleton — 5’11″, 173

2023 STATS: 48-714-6 — PPG: 13.1

The former three-star out of Georgia also held offers from the likes of Kansas State, Auburn, Texas A&M, and Utah, among others. He didn’t receive a qualitative evaluation from 247 Sports, but they did list his track accolades and high school stats:

Also runs track. As a junior, placed 10th at the Georgia AAAAA state meet in the 100-meter dash. Was also a state qualifier in the 400-meter dash and the long jump. Season-bests in the 100 include: 10.68 (3.1), 10.69, 10.72 (1.4), 10.93 (2.1). 10.95 and 11.01 (-1.3). 

2022: As a senior, hauled in 65 passes for 1,115 yards and 12 TD. Also averaged 23.6 yards per kick return taking on to the house. Key player for an Alexander squad that competed in Georgia’s AAAAAA classification.

You didn’t need to see the track stuff to know that he’s fast. The fact that he’s playing on the boundary at 5’11″ tells us all we need to know about his athleticism. 

According to Campus2Canton, his current ADP is 92.3, or about the middle of the seventh round. This is a pretty dramatic decrease (or increase, however you want to think about it) from his ADP in March, which was 104.8, or around the eighth round. 

I have some concerns about GT’s schedule as it relates to CFF, so I’m probably not going to be acquiring a lot of their players at current value. However, of the GT assets, I think Singleton’s the one I like the most.

Interested in more content like this? I have good news, there’s an obscene amount over here.

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