There is a mural painted on the gym wall of Farragut High School in Chicago featuring former stars Kevin Garnet and Ronnie Fields, two McDonald's All-Americans that went straight from the high school ranks to the pros. People used to joke with Chris Singletary that he'd be the next one on the wall. They aren't joking anymore.
Singletary, a strong-bodied 6-foot-3, 200-pound guard, knows of the history that has been before him.
"Without a doubt, seeing that mural everyday of KG and Ronnie just inspires me," Singletary said. "It's pretty cool to think that they played on the same court and played for the same coach that taught the same things helps me a lot. A lot of people tell me that I'm next to go on the wall."
In Chicago, he's already earned the respect of those that watch basketball as if it were a religious ceremony. Singletary is putting in 19 points, seven rebounds and six assists a contest. The class of 2006 product feels like he's doing well.
"I've been playing pretty good. I wanted to take my game to another level this year and I think I've been doing alright," he said. "We have a young team so I've tried to show them the ropes and trying to step up and play hard at the same time."
After losing to Shaun Livingston and a nationally ranked Peoria Central team last year in the Elite Eight, Singletary is looking forward to the state tournament again. That is if the 12-9 Farragut team gets there. They must advance through the always-tough Chicago city league playoffs which begin on Wednesday.
Purdue, Illinois and Marquette have all been in to see him play this year, he said. Alabama, Florida State, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Oklahoma State and Southern Illinois are all staying in touch with mail and calls to his coach. No one has offered…yet.
"This summer is huge. I'm going to be playing non-stop," Singletary said. "I'm playing for my college scholarships."
And a little part of him is playing for a space on the gym wall, too.