Committed Over: Interest from Nevada, Arizona, USC
On Film: Cameron Alexander only has one full year of playing defensive end under his belt - he initially pursued high school football as a tight end. He also played basketball at Mira Costa High School in Manhattan Beach (Calif.). All that athleticism shows up in his film, however.
Alexander's 6-foot-4 and 225-pound frame has him looking more like a 3-4 outside linebacker than 4-3 defensive end, which are often interchangeable. On several plays, Alexander proves so by disengaging at the line and using his speed and pursuit to track down ball carriers across the field and coming through with a tackle. At the line of scrimmage, he also shows some moves against offensive linemen that could make him a valuable edge rusher for the Spartans down the line. He will likely have to add some weight before contending for one of those spots at SJSU.
"In high school we had a 3-4, so I was mostly going inside in the B-gap," Alexander said. "It was focused on power and pass rush. Going to San Jose State, it will be a 4-3, so I’ll be able to do more edge rush and pass rushing. I think I’ll learn quickly and excel at it."
Recruiting Impact: Alexander does not register on the recruiting scale, outside of his two-star rating. He held no other FBS offers nor was he ranked on a regional or national scale.
As far as other schools go, he did camp with Nevada, Arizona and USC, but did not have other offers. Alexander attended the camps as a tight end, as well as San Jose State's. It was not until his senior season that he dedicated his efforts to the defensive line. Former assistant Donte Williams had an eye for his talent and the Spartans avoided a fight with other programs after his late-November commitment. In fact, SJSU even gave him the option of playing tight end or defensive end, Alexander said, but he chose the D-Line.
San Jose State only signed two defensive linemen in the 2016 class and the other is another athlete who will likely need to add some pounds in Dante Abono.
Expect redshirt freshmen Malik Hayes and Lukas Hendricks to add depth behind the returners on the Spartans’ line while the true freshmen possibly redshirt.
Quotable: “San Jose State was really the only school that looked at me," Alexander said. "I was expecting more, but that was the only one that came through so I’m sticking with them. It’s a blessing getting recognized by SJSU and being able to play at the next level… Even if (other schools show interest), I’m pretty comfortable with San Jose - Especially having gone up there and liking it so much.”
Coach's Comment: "Cameron is a very good all-around athlete. His size, quickness and knack for rushing the passer make him a terrific addition to our program." - SJSU Head Coach Ron Caragher
Final Thought: Cameron Alexander was not highly recruited, but former assistant coach Donte Williams had an eye for talent and pursuing recruits before Power-5 schools made their offers - which should give Spartan fans some confidence in Alexander’s addition. Recruiting defensive linemen has been a struggle and Alexander could be a diamond in the rough.