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Two-Star Checkup: Unheralded prospects make noise in ACC

Every Thursday during the college football season, we look back on some two-star prospects who are outplaying their high school ranking and helping their teams win games. This week we look at a trio of two-star prospects from the ACC who flew under the radar as recruits but made plenty of plays on the big stage on Saturday.

OTHER RECENT CHECKUPS: Three-Stars | Four-Stars | Five Stars

Hunter Renfrow
Hunter Renfrow (AP Images)

As a recruit: Renfrow was an undersized quarterback as a high school prospect in the Class of 2014 and didn’t really even play wide receiver until he showed up at the Shrine Bowl at the conclusion of his senior season. He turned heads during that week playing against some pretty good competition, and by the time January rolled around he had a tough decision to make – take a full scholarship and play FBS football for Appalachian State, or accept an invitation to walk on at Clemson. After officially visiting both schools, he elected to role the dice and joined the Tigers in time for the 2014 season.

What he did this week: Most fans of college football know Renfrow’s story by now: He went from walk-on to regular contributor and ended up being a hero in last year’s National Championship Game, catching the game-winning touchdown in the closing seconds against Alabama. And while it might seem like Renfrow has been in school forever, he’s just a redshirt junior and he’s still one of the Tigers' most important weapons. In Saturday’s win over Florida State, he was his usual productive self, finishing with four catches for 35 yards. Renfrow has caught at least one pass in every game this season, and dating back to last season he has caught at least one pass in 19 straight games. Renfrow is approaching 1,500 career yards and will likely to continue to be a headache for ACC defenses at least one more year.

Jakobi Meyers
Jakobi Meyers (AP Images)

As a recruit: Ranked as a quarterback coming out of high school, the one-time baseball star initially committed to Kent State before a flood of late interest came his way in the month leading up to signing day. Wake Forest and N.C. State emerged as the favorites and Meyers flipped to the Wolfpack following an official visit. Despite a late push from several schools, including Florida, Meyers stuck with the Wolfpack.

What he did this week: Meyers spent his freshman year in Raleigh redshirting while playing quarterback, and didn’t make the move to wide receiver until just a week before the season opener in 2016. But he took to the new position like a natural, playing in all 13 games and finishing the year with 158 yards receiving. This year, Meyers has developed into one of Pack’s top receivers, and he contributed one catch for 14 yards in Saturday’s victory over Boston College. Meyers has recorded at least one catch in all but one game this season and his four touchdown receptions are tied for the team lead.

As a recruit: Williams recruitment got off to a slow start but he was identified as a prospect by the SMU staff and made his commitment to the Mustangs during the summer prior to his senior season. After having a terrific senior year, Williams saw his recruitment take off, with Louisville and Virginia Tech both joining the fold. The Cardinals ended up getting Williams on campus for an official visit and he flipped to the school two weeks before Signing Day in 2016.

What he did this week: Williams redshirted in his first year on campus and seemed to be on track to compete for playing time heading into 2017 before he tore his ACL during spring practice. Most expected Williams to miss the season but as other Cardinals running backs went down with injuries, Williams was working his way back to health. He returned to the field last month and saw his most extensive action in Saturday’s victory over Virginia, rushing 15 times for 88 yards and a touchdown. Running back depth has been a weakness for Louisville all season so the emergence of Williams couldn’t have come at a better time and the fact that he’s back on the field making big plays just seven months after an ACL tear makes his story that much more impressive.