Ok, so here's the deal. I'm in my 2nd year and doing very average (right at the mean in all classes, slightly above in 1st year). I scored an awesome research position with the residency director at an academic institution for this summer. I will be working on a paper with him that he says will be published and my name is going to be on it if it is (evidence based treatment option type, I don't know how well this really looks?) I will also have the opportunity to be with him in the clinical setting as well. I have not taken Step I yet, but given my current med school grades and MCAT, even ACT scores I should do very average. And so my question is: Given that I will not be AOA, not top 25% of my class in the end, and assuming average board scores, will the research and connections with this residency director help me at all providing it all pans out as planned? I would like to do my residency there for geographical reasons, but it's a 'good' academic program and obviously competitive. Do you guys think I stand a chance?