Camron Buckley didn’t leave Texas A&M because he had anything against the place. He liked the school, he liked the program, and said he enjoyed his time there.
He left because he thought he could do more for his future prospects elsewhere.
“Leaving was just a business decision,” Buckley said. “I still love College Station, still love A&M, still love all the coaching staff there. It was just a business decision for me personally.”
And in case it wasn’t clear what he meant by “business decision,” Buckley drove the point home with his attire in a Zoom press conference on Thursday. He wore a black hooded sweatshirt with two words written in cursive emblazoned randomly all over it — “get money.”
Connecting the obvious dots there, Buckley plans on playing professional football, and even though Texas A&M is still the more prestigious college football program, he believed Indiana would give him a better chance to make his case to NFL franchises.
Buckley missed all of last season with a knee injury and most of the receivers who replaced him are back. The Aggies will have a new quarterback after Kellen Mond was taken in the third round of the draft by the Minnesota Vikings.
Buckley believes the Hoosiers will throw more in their spread offense, provided quarterback Michael Penix comes back healthy after his season-ending ACL tear.
“I love what this team is doing,” Buckley said. “I love what coach (Tom) Allen is doing and what coach (Grant) Heard is doing with the receiving corps. We have a great quarterback coming back. To come in and be a part of this offense means a lot.”
Allen and Heard recruited Buckley when they were at Ole Miss and and Buckley was a three-star recruit from Cedar Hill, Texas.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pounder is hopeful that gives him an in and leads to more balls getting thrown his way. He caught 34 passes for 474 yards as a sophomore in 2018 and 17 for 282 yards and three touchdowns as a freshman in 2017, but just 11 for 121 yards in 2019 before his injury.
Buckley said he expects to be used as an outside receiver predominantly, but that he can play inside on occasion. At A&M, he said, he was used the opposite way — primarily inside but outside at times.
He will have to battle for playing time either way. The Hoosiers bring back both of their starting outside receivers in All-Big Ten first-team pick Ty Fryfogle and Miles Marshall. They lost slot receiver Whop Philyor but brought in Florida State transfer D.J. Matthews, who seems to have a lock on the inside position after an excellent spring practice.
However, Buckley is confident there will be enough work for him to reach the goal he had written all over his sweatshirt.
“There’s always going to be competition,” Buckley said. “Competition is in me. But I wouldn’t have come here if I didn’t feel like I’d get high reps or an opportunity to start. That would have been a bad business decision. And I’m very educated. It was an educated move. Precise.”
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