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Sumter native helps Fairleigh Dickinson take down Purdue in what many consider the greatest upset in NCAA Tournament history

Grant Singleton is in his first season at FDU after transferring from St. Thomas Aquinas, a Division II school in Sparkill, New York.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Grant Singleton spent four seasons at St. Thomas Aquinas, a Division II school in Sparkill, New York. 

The former Lakewood standout scored 1,115 points and recorded 312 rebounds and 275 assists for that program which was led by Tobin Anderson.

But when Anderson was hired to take over the Fairleigh Dickinson program, the Sumter native made the decision to follow his head coach and transfer to the school which competes in the Northeast Conference. That decision has led Grant to being a part of what pundits already say is the biggest upset in the history of the NCAA Tournament.

Grant is a starter in the backcourt for FDU who came in as a 16 seed. But in the latest and perhaps greatest example of what March Madness is, the Knights upset  #1 seed Purdue 63-58, the second time a 16 has beaten a 1 but that is just part of the story.

Fairleigh Dickson did not win its league tournament which is the normal route for a one-bid league to earn a trip to the Big Dance. FDU lost in the NEC Tournament final 67-66 to Merrimack. But Merrimack is ineligible to make the NCAA Tournament this season as it is in the process of making the transition from Division II to Division I. 

So FDU, a team ranked 301 in the NET rankings with a strength of schedule ranked last in the country (363rd), received a bid to the tournament as the last team in the field.

FDU travelled to Dayton for the First Four and cruised past Texas Southern 84-61 to play its way into the 64-team tournament. But the Knights were not satisfied with just one win in the Tournament and a team with an average of height of 6'1 took down a Purdue team that was poised to make a deep run in the tournament.

Instead, it is Fairleigh Dickinson who has moved on to the round of 32 where the Knights will face Florida Atlantic with the winner advancing to the Sweet 16.

Singleton's stat line was quite impressive against the Boilermakers - eight points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals. FDU is the smallest team in the field with the average height of the team around 6-1.

Singleton stands 5-9 but everyone on the FDU squad played taller Friday against a Big 10 powerhouse. 

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