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2021 in Review: Former Union County Standout Shi Smith Drafted by Carolina Panthers

Daniel Prince

Smith joins select group of NFL players from Union

We continue to look back at some of the year’s top news stories all this week.

Former Union County High School standout Shi Smith was selected by the Carolina Panthers in the 6th round of this year’s NFL draft, joining an elite group of NFL players who list Union County as their hometown.

According to, Smith joins Sebastian Savage from Carlisle, who played 3 games for Washington in 1994 and 1995; Bill Tucker from Union, who played high school ball in West Virginia and played running back for San Francisco and Chicago from 1967 to 1971; Bob Jeter, born in Union but raised in West Virginia, who played defensive back for the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears, winning the NFL championship in 1965 with the Packers and winning the first two Super Bowls with the Packers, as well; Mickey Sims, who went to Lockhart High School and played defensive tackle for Cleveland from 1977-1979; Darrell Austin, who played guard, center, and tackle for the New York Jets and Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 1975-1980; Jim Youngblood, who went to Jonesville High School and played linebacker for the LA Rams from 1973-1984, as well as 4 games for Washington in 1984; and Jim Camp, who played high school ball in Virginia and played quarterback for the Brooklyn Dodgers of the All-America Football Conference in 1948 for 12 games.

So far this year, Smith has played in 5 games. He has 6 receptions for 104 yards, the longest of which went for 63 yards this past week in a loss to Tampa Bay. He has a single kick return for 24 yards, and 1 rush attempt for -3 yards.

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