Jamil Kamara thought he picked the perfect school when he announced on national television at the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl that he would stay in state and play for Virginia. A little more than 15 months later, Kamara is looking for the next perfect school to go to.
After playing in only five games as a true freshman, registering one catch for six yards, and not liking the direction the offense was heading, Kamara announced May 29 that he’d been given his release and would transfer before next season.
“I wasn’t really sure I was getting the chance to show my abilities or get enough opportunities,” Kamara told Scout.com. “We had the starting quarterback leave and we were left with one or two scholarship quarterbacks. The offense I didn’t feel like it fit me anymore. This year they’re trying to go to a power-running offense, so it was a combination of things.”
Since receiving his release, Kamara – a former four-star recruit from Virginia Beach (VA) Bishop Sullivan Catholic - said he’s heard from between 10-15 schools but says the schools that have caught his attention are Colorado, Washington State and Wisconsin. He’s also heard from a number of junior college and lower division schools.
Of that group, the 6-2, 210-pound receiver has a clear favorite.
“Wisconsin is my favorite right now,” said Kamara. “Wisconsin has a play-action game where you can go deep and make plays.”
Kamara has latched on to Wisconsin because of head coach Paul Chryst. Chryst and a number of members of his current Wisconsin staff recruited Kamara when they were coaching at Pittsburgh. Kamara even took an official visit to Pitt a little more than a month before he decided.
“I think a day after my uncle started emailing schools they reached out,” said Kamara, referring to Wisconsin. “(Chryst) was telling me how it was a great fit. I had a great relationship with the coaches at Pitt that came to Wisconsin through the recruiting process. It was a crazy thing that all happened but it is a real, real good option. The relationship with the coaches I have doesn’t make them strangers.
“Their offense is really effective. They are a good school which is also good academically. They said I could play a playmaker for 2016.”
Kamara took an official visit to Wisconsin in October 2013 and was hosted by now-senior cornerback, and good friend, T.J. Reynard. Kamara made that trip by himself and said he’s in the process of setting up an official visit back to Madison so his parents can see the campus.
“I want them to see it,” said Kamara. “(The campus) isn’t too close, so I want them to see where I’d be living at if we take things further. It was a great atmosphere. They had great facilities, probably the best facilities I’ve seen in the whole process. It’s just a good place out there. Everyone is cool.”
While going through the process again has been manageable, Kamara hopes to wrap it up quickly so he can join his new teammates and get to work.
“It hasn’t been as stressful as it was the first time, so it’s giving me time to sit back and take it all in,” said Kamara. “I feel like I’m in a good spot right now.”
After reporting approximately a 2.55 grade point average during his first year in Virginia, Kamara says he wants to continue to play Division 1, where he would have three years of eligibility remaining after redshirting in 2015.