Always Be Yourself, Unless You Can be Hunter Renfrow, Then be Hunter Renfrow

I understand, Hunter Renfrow has been the subject of many wonderful articles but I think that there’s room for one more, and here’s mine.

He’s everybody’s favorite underdog. I’m sure there has never been a more beloved walk-on at Clemson than Renfrow. He is someone everyone can look up to, well at least figuratively speaking.

He’s accomplished so much, that this part of his journey has to feel somewhat like a dream. Unlike a less humble, less mature young man, Renfrow seems completely unfazed by his success and his many accomplishments.

In an article written yesterday about Ben Boulware being one of two Clemson players I’d wish to emulate, Hunter Renfrow is the second. Juxtaposed beside Boulware’s passionate and emotional demeanor, Renfrow is easy going. He lives in seemingly unflappable calmness.

That is one of the things that makes him remarkable, being calm in the heat of the moment. The term, ‘3rd and Renfrow’ says it all. He was a reliable set of hands when his team absolutely needed a set. He rarely, if ever, failed to deliver.

The story goes, Renfrow, a driven young baseballer wanted to learn to be a wide receiver. He needed to have someone to throw passes and that job fell to Suzanne, his mother. In a loving but no less left handed compliment, Renfrow credits his Mother’s terrible passes for his skilled hands.

It must have worked. During high school, he played many positions and excelled in all. He was a quarterback, running back, wide receiver and return man. I’m sure he could have excelled at any position, except maybe the offensive and defensive lines.

Renfrow’s father, Tim Renfrow was his head coach at Socastee High School, just outside of Myrtle Beach and he knew his fourth child had talent.

The younger Renfrow received a little interest from Georgia Tech, but later they stopped calling, citing his small hands as an issue. He had interest from a few smaller schools, most notably App State. That didn’t phase the young Renfrow, he wanted to attend Clemson. He was offered and accepted a preferred walk-on slot with his beloved Tigers.

I won’t waste time, nor space, in listing every his every accomplishment. It would fill a flash drive so, let’s mention a few highlights.

His first touchdown was against Louisville on the road, helping secure a 20-17 victory for the Tigers. He remembers that as his most memorable touchdown catch. He won the Burlsworth Trophy, for the nation’s best walk-on. As always, he was humble in his acceptance of this award.

Fast forward to January 9, 2017, in Tampa, with six seconds left, down by three to Alabama. Deshaun Watson found Renfrow open in the end zone to seal Clemson’s second national championship.

That catch is etched in the mind and on the heart of every Clemson fan across the country. In quintessential Renfrow fashion, before celebrating with teammates, he simply tossed the ball to an official as if nothing life-changing had just happened. It was priceless.

Now, he’s proven his immense worth to the Las Vegas Raiders and will soon be rewarded with a well deserved huge, new contract. One that could make him one of the highest paid slot receivers in the NFL. However, I doubt it will change the essence of who Renfrow truly is. In fact, I’d bet on it.

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