As we wrap up our series highlighting players and coaches that have found success or redemption at a second school after a transfer or coaching change in Double Dip, presented by IHop, we look at J.J. Watt. Watt began his college career as a tight end at Central Michigan but ended it as one of the nation's top defensive ends at Wisconsin.
First Stop: Watt was not a highly touted recruit coming out of Pewaukee, Wisconsin and the two-star tight end made his way to Central Michigan to start his college career. In his freshman season, Watt caught just eight passes for 77 yards and the Chippewas wanted to convert him into an offensive lineman. After all, he had grown an inch and put on 25 pounds since he arrived on campus.
Watt wasn't too keen on moving to offensive line and wanted to go back closer to home so he transferred to Wisconsin, where coach Bret Bielema allowed him to walk-on as a defensive end and redshirt.
Double Dip: After another offseason where he put on more weight, Watt was an imposing presence on the defensive line at 6-foot-5, 290 pounds. His redshirt sophomore season -- his first at defensive line -- Watt had 44 tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss, five pass deflections and 4.5 sacks.
In his junior year, he continued to improve and emerged as one of the nation's top defensive end prospects with 62 tackles, 21 tackles for loss, nine pass deflections and seven sacks. That performance earned him first-team All-Big Ten honors and a second-team All-America team selection.
Watt's meteoric rise from unheralded high school tight end to dominant defensive end was complete and he left Wisconsin after his junior year to enter the NFL Draft.
NFL Career: Watt was taken No. 11 overall by the Houston Texans and has quickly become the league's most feared defensive end -- and arguably the best player in the NFL. He has recorded 20.5 sacks in a season twice -- 2012 and 2014 -- and for his career has 57 sacks in just four seasons.
In 2014, Watt had a season for the ages with 20.5 sacks, 59 tackles, five fumble recoveries, four forced fumbles, a fumble recovery touchdown, an interception return touchdown and -- leaning on his old tight end experience -- three receptions on offense that all went for touchdowns.
Watt's off to an historic start to his NFL career, which isn't too bad for a kid who started as a tight end at Central Michigan and then had to walk-on at Wisconsin.