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What Singleton means, and what he doesn't ...

Kentucky's fascination with the one that got away is as storied as it is ridiculous. For every blue chipper that inks with the Cats -- this Signing Day, there were two in Darius Miller and DeAndre Liggins, both top 35 -- there are imprinted in the memory of Big Blue Nation's collective brain a list of all those _____s (fill in insult/derogatory name of choice) who for whatever legitimate or illegitimate reasons opted to go elsewhere. What's most curious is that so few of them turn out to really haunt the program, and how long that collective memory is for recruitniks.

Mention the name "Darius Rice" to a fair number of Internet Heroes in blue and you'll likely get back whatever emoticon exists for "Crushed Soul."

Now google Darius Rice's career numbers in the NCAA tournament and the NBA.

What you'll find is a surprising discrepancy between his impact on the college game and his imprint on the big blue psyche.

Like a jilted lover, Kentucky fans hold long and tortured grudges. There are to this day fans that cheered Ralph Sampson III's decision to attend some other school for one reason alone: his father had stiffed the Cats. In 1979!

And while getting punked by Sampson numero dos may have turned out to be farily significant (the dude was a three-time national Player of the Year), the fact that a full 28 years later fans haven't forgotten shows the extent to which the rather whimsical choices of teenagers hold undo sway in the lives of myriad otherwise sane and logical people.

Some of the angst in today's announcement by lanky Georgia forward Chris Singleton is no doubt precipitated by a sinking feeling that comes with the Wildcats in a seeming freefall. Beset by injuries and a shocking ineptitude, something -- anything -- resembling good news is more than welcome.

But the list of the non-chosen of late doesn't exactly fill an All-American team. Sure, there's the significant Tyler Hansbrough and Brandan Wright decisions. Each of those had UK in the top three, and both ended up hurting the squad considerably.

But are we really so broken now that Willie Kemp, Darius Washington, Jason Rich, Mohammad Abukar or Dan Werner (Florida) went their own way?

I'm not. The problems this year's team has weren't created by missing any of those turkeys, and wouldn't be solved immediately by their decidedly "OK" statures.

Obviously, on some level, every player's career takes different turns depending on where he ends up. Perhaps Marvin Stone at Alabama is a lottery pick, or Isaiah Swann at Kentucky is the linchpin of a national champion. It's impossible to know. But you do know that for that one brief moment, they spurned you, and that is what you remember, O obsessee of the recruiting jungle.

So as you gnash your teeth at Singleton's decision to attend sunny Florida State, where he'll hide ably behind third string defensive lineman at the buffet line, remember that you can't get every kid.

And more importantly, you may not want them all.