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Volume 21 No. 26
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Former IMG agent brings unique perspective to Wildcats

Amid the increasing evolution of college football support staffs, SportsBusiness Journal sought out some of the unique people and positions that have been part of that growth.

Singletary worked for IMG super-agents Mark Steinberg and Tom Condon before gravitating to college athletics.

The hot-button issue of agents on campus typically puts football coaches on guard, but in the case of Chris Singletary, he’s using his background as a former agent at IMG to reshape the recruiting efforts at Arizona.

Hired as the director of recruiting last year, Singletary looks for talent that will lift the Wildcats into the upper echelons of the Pac-12. It’s not unlike what Singletary did for seven-plus years at IMG, first as an intern and later an agent.

To his knowledge, Singletary is the only former agent who now works on a college football staff.

“Having sat across the table from NFL general managers and player personnel guys, you get an understanding of what they’re looking for,” he said.

Singletary started his internship at IMG after his playing days at Michigan and eventually worked for super-agents Mark Steinberg and Tom Condon at a time when IMG was deep into team sports.

“I thought that was it. I thought I’d be an agent or maybe go on to be an NFL general manager,” he said.

But when former Michigan coach Lloyd Carr reached out to Singletary in 2007, Singletary couldn’t say no to his alma mater, where he was a member of the Wolverines’ 1997 national championship team.

The Detroit native stayed at Michigan for almost a decade before joining Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez’s support staff in 2016. Now Singletary coordinates the program’s pro day workouts, serves as the liaison with pro scouts, mentors Arizona players on selecting an agent and preparing for NFL combine interviews, and evaluates high school talent.

In his year-plus with the Wildcats, he also has expanded the recruiting footprint to incorporate more of the country, like the hotbed of Texas, in addition to the states of Arizona and California.

“The biggest thing about the college game is the relationship with the athletes,” said Singletary, who admittedly remains intrigued by one day working in the NFL. “Knowing you can make a difference for them is what makes it special.”

— Michael Smith