They are born under the same family name, and that is where the comparisons end. Cameron and Kyle Queiro have been on Northwestern’s radar for more than two years; one (Kyle) is slated to join the Wildcats next season. And the other doesn’t sound like he’s all that far behind.
“Right now, Northwestern is my number one,” said the younger Queiro, who visited with older brother Kyle after the latter committed in August. “When I went up for the weekend, it was the best visit I’ve had so far.”
It is tempting to assume Cameron will come packaged as a carbon copy of his older brother. Only one year separates them. They play on the same side of the ball, defense, for the same New Jersey powerhouse program (Bergen Catholic). Both cite academic priority as the main criteria for their college choice.
Until you really brush aside coverbook generalizations, the realization that Cameron is in fact a different player and completely different personality type might not be so easy to discern.
“People tell me we’re complete opposites,” Cameron said.
On the football field, Kyle projects to line up at safety for the Wildcats. Cameron is a 6’1’’ 205-pound heat-seeking, sideline-to-sideline, playmaking outside linebacker, an ideal fit for coach Pat Fitzgerald’s preference for an agile linebacking corps.
If that’s not enough to disabuse the analog narrative, the personality contrast between the Queiro brothers couldn’t be more striking. Kyle is a boisterous on-field presence who, according to Cameron, “doesn’t mind letting you know when he does something right.” Cameron considers himself a diligent, self-contained hard worker. Rather than broadcast his accomplishments, the still uncommitted Queiro brother keeps his satisfaction – personal or observed – to himself.
“I’m confident but I keep it quiet when I compete,” Cameron said. “When he competes, he’s loud. He’s cocky in a good way.”
Dispositional variance has not precluded a good-old fashioned brother-to-brother rivalry. From the time Cameron first began playing sports, it’s been a constant grind to outreach, outleap, outrun, outjump and just plain outwork his older brother in whatever athletic endeavor they undertake. Not even video games are spared of the intense mutual competitive fire
“We’ve always competed for everything,” Cameron said. “Whether it be Xbox or racing or something else.” If Cameron does decide to follow in his brother’s footsteps, the Wildcats will get a glimpse of this years-old family rivalry. On the small chance the personal battle grounds would abate in favor of an amicable relationship in team environments should Cameron pledge to Northwestern, Cameron laughed. “I always joke around and tell him he shouldn’t want me to go here [Northwestern]. He just brushes it off.”
The only thing Cameron is competing with as it pertains to his college recruitment is time. He plans to visit several schools in the coming months, including Georgia Tech, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Duke and possibly Vanderbilt. Not included on the list, and perhaps mystifyingly so for the objective observer, is Northwestern.
But don’t take that as a signal that Cameron has cooled on the Wildcats. It’s quite the opposite, actually. Having already spent the weekend at Northwestern last year, Cameron is yet to encounter another school that comes close to matching the Wildcats’ combination of academic prestige, relationships with coaches and, lest we forget, a brother who’s set to join Northwestern in preseason workouts this summer.
He knows how things work in Evanston, and unless another school blows him out of the water on one of his upcoming visits, you can expect Cameron to commit to the Wildcats as early as the second week of May.
“I’d say 80 percent chance,” Cameron said. “If I saw another atmosphere that really shocked me at another school, then I might change my mind. But the way I feel about the coaches and the people here [Northwestern], It’s probably going to stay my number one.”
Ask Cameron’s mom, and his recruitment is a closed book proposition. “My mom already considers me a Wildcat,” he said.
Over the next two months, as Cameron visits other interested programs, he will go about making sure Northwestern is the perfect college campus and football environment he believed it was while spending time in Evanston with Kyle last year.
Cameron won’t have a closed mind on these visits. He’ll just have a lasting reminder of what his perfect school – academically, football-wise, the general amicable vibe he got while walking around campus – would look like.
“It just fits me,” he said.