In 2008, Tarrion Adams was putting the finishing touches on what was the finest career of any running back ever at TU. In that season, Adams set new school records for most rushing yards in a game (323), most rushing yards in a career (3651), most rushing touchdowns in a single season (14) and most career rushing touchdowns (32).
Also that season, Adams and his teammates received a visit from a recruit named Alex Singleton. Adams greeted Singleton and had a message for him.
"I talked to Tarrion Adams when I was getting recruited by Tulsa, he told me about how he had the (touchdown) record," Singleton said. "I told him I was gonna get it, I was gonna go for it."
"I guess I made it."
Oh, he made it alright. Five years later, Singleton has followed through on his words to Adams, setting new school records for both single-season (15) and career (34) rushing touchdowns.
"I just think it's a big blessing, to put my mark on Tulsa history," Singleton said. "To have me up in the record book as the all-time rushing touchdown holder, it just feels good. Knowing that my name is on something, it really means a lot."
Pretty impressive for a guy who only played in one game and didn't score his entire freshman season.
In fact, if Singleton had accepted a different college offer, none of this would have been possible. Singleton turned down an offer from LSU to play fullback as well as one from Louisiana-Monroe to play linebacker.
He wanted to be a running back, Tulsa gave him that opportunity, and he's made the most of it.
Singleton has joined forces with Trey Watts and Ja'Terian Douglas to form one of the most dangerous running back combinations in the country. The Golden Hurricane ranks ninth among FBS teams in rushing yards per game and is No. 3 in rushing touchdowns.
His nose for the end zone has not only placed him atop TU's all-time lists, but also has him climbing the ladder on Conference USA's rushing touchdown chart. In this season alone, Singleton has passed the likes of Ahmad Bradshaw and Chris Johnson and is five scores away from tying Matt Forte for fifth all time. That's pretty elite company by anyone's standards.
Singleton says that the team's success has made the records that much sweeter, and that his focus remains on the big picture.
"It's fun, but we can't take our eyes off the prize, which is to go undefeated in conference and then go to the bowl and win that. But it's fun while we're still rolling."