Written by Cory Twibell: firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 18 May 2012 00:00
Westbury native and former Holy Trinity football standout Ronnie Cameron wasn’t selected by any National Football League teams in the recent draft but learned he was signed as a free agent by the Chicago Bears soon after the final pick in the draft was made.
Cameron, 6-foot-2, 304-pounds, earned six All-America distinctions in his final season at defensive tackle at Old Dominion University. The Westbury Times recently caught up with the new Bear, who was in contact with 22 other NFL teams before signing in Chicago.
WT: Describe your emotions throughout the draft weekend.
RC: My emotions were up and down throughout the draft weekend. I was excited to see friends of mine get drafted and realize their dreams but there was a sense of frustration that grew as the days wore on. As the seventh round was coming to an end, the realization of me not being drafted had set in and then I refocused my energy towards rookie free agency. I had a lot to be happy about though because I was one of the most sought after free agents, having 22 NFL teams call and offer me contracts.
WT: Had you spoken with any representatives of the Jets or Giants prior to the draft?
RC: I visited both the Giants and the Jets in the pre-draft process and enjoyed both of those experiences.
WT: Who did you speak with from the Bears when you heard the news? What did they tell you?
RC: I spoke with defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli and defensive line coach Mike Phair. They had spoken to me all the days leading up to the draft and then throughout the draft and I know their interest in me hadn’t wavered. It was an easy choice picking the Chicago Bears because it is an historic franchise with a tradition of winning.
WT: How do you see yourself fitting into the Bears’ defensive scheme?
RC: They see me as three-technique defensive tackle in their scheme in the mold of Warren Sapp when he played with Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
WT: What does your schedule look like for the next few weeks and months?
RC: I head to Chicago next week for rookie mini-camp and then workouts and organized team activities. I’ll be there for a month and then I come home to finish preparing for training camp in mid-July.
WT: Anyone you want to thank?
RC: I want to thank my parents Ritha and Ronnie Cameron and my siblings Melissa and Garry Cameron for being there for me throughout this process and my entire life. I want to thank Old Dominion University and the administration and my football family down at ODU, specifically my teammates, coach Wilder, coach Malloy, coach Cotton and the rest of the coaching staff. Also want to thank Holy Trinity High School for helping me with my start that allowed me to play collegiate football. Also I want to show appreciation to the unwavering support of all my friends and family.