July 18, 2012

Cameron takes the lead

Wake Forest freshman quarterback Tyler Cameron has not been on campus for a year and he is already fostering a spirit of community with his new teammates.

Whether it is going bowling or playing video games in his dorm room the rest of Wake's freshmen are already gravitating toward the Jupiter (Fla.) native.

"It's just kind of naturally what I've always done," Cameron said. "I always felt like as being the quarterback and one day hopefully being the quarterback of this team [and] the leader of this team I'm going to be the leader of everyone here and try to bring everyone together. Everyone's meshing real well. I'm really excited."

His leadership is not limited to bringing his teammates together, however it extends to serving them also, manifesting itself all the way to Cameron and his family opening their home to Wake freshman Kevis Jones for about a month before the start of summer school.

Cameron, who cares about his teammates, said the freshmen are together every night and that this class is a close-knit group.

"[My highlight at Wake so far has been] getting around the team and getting to know everybody," Cameron said. "It's a good group of kids. I really enjoy being with everyone. Everyone really gets along well, which I was very surprised by and it's awesome."

"The older guys have been great. I see a lot of older guys taking kids under their wings. I see [Michael] Campanaro working with Jonathan Williams and [Jared] Crump."

However, it has not been an easy road since the 6-foot-3 and 225-pounder enrolled at Wake Forest a semester early after graduating from high school in December 2011. He missed all of spring practice recovering from off-season shoulder surgery.

"The spring was a lot of learning for me," Cameron said. "Right now I'm just trying to work hard and get my shoulder back, so I can go for the season. I've been in rehab and just doing what I can do. I should be throwing any day, so I'm excited to be back at it. It's a slow process."

Cameron added he will be a medical redshirt this season, but said he will be ready to go if his team needs him.

In his senior season at Jupiter Cameron completed 86 of his 189 passes for 1,453 yards and 12 touchdowns to six interceptions, and rushed 102 times for 379 yards and six touchdowns.

Rivals.com rated Cameron as the No. 10 dual-threat quarterback and the No. 51 overall prospect in Florida for the 2012 recruiting class.

He has not sat idly during the rehabilitation process of his shoulder, but has used this time to improve the mental aspects of his game.

"I'm just trying to kill that playbook, trying to own it, so when I get that chance I can be right there with Tanner [Price], Kevin [Sousa], Brendan [Cross], with all those guys," Cameron said. "It's a work in progress. It's a big playbook. It's complicated, but I'm getting it. I'm in there watching film, trying to understand what's going on."

When he gets a break from the books and football Cameron, who misses being out on the boat back home fishing with his dad, enjoys going to visit family in Boone and Wilmington.

Cameron said his little cousin is going to try to teach him how to surf next time he goes to Wilmington.

While he misses the water Cameron discovered that like the football team the university is also a close-knit community. He said everyone knows everyone, which has made for a smooth transition.

As he and the rest of the freshman class grow in unity and develop as players who can contribute on the gridiron Wake Forest fans may soon be echoing Cameron's excitement for the future.

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