Back row on left is McFarlane’s sister Cayla, mother Stacey, father Kevin and in front, youngest sister Catherine. By BRIAN REED-BAIOTTO, Sports Editor After getting to know Poly senior Cameron McFarlane early on, I told whomever would listen that he’s the type of player, student and person that would be a perfect fit at a […]
Back row on left is McFarlane’s sister Cayla, mother Stacey, father Kevin and in front, youngest sister Catherine.
By BRIAN REED-BAIOTTO, Sports Editor
After getting to know Poly senior Cameron McFarlane early on, I told whomever would listen that he’s the type of player, student and person that would be a perfect fit at a school like Duke or Stanford.
A couple months later, McFarlane has now agreed to walk on at Stanford and become a member of not only a national football power, but also an institution who’s academic excellence rivals anyone.
The 6-foot, 200-pound Poly captain, who scored 10 touchdowns this season, and made as big an impact on offense at running back as he did at linebacker for Coach Chris Schmoke’s defense, is a can’t miss individual.
He’s incredibly intelligent and articulate, as his grades would indicate.
His work ethic is off the charts and he comes from a loving and impressive family.
Stanford isn’t just a great fit for McFarlane because of the prestige that comes with earning their diploma, and it’s not just because it’s far enough away from home, but not too far to gain a little independence.
It’s also special for McFarlane because his father, Kevin, is an alumnus.
McFarlane has visited the school on numerous times as a kid to see what his dad’s college campus was like, but also to go watch the Cardinal play football.
He said there was never a time when visiting the Palo Alto campus as a young boy that he would ever have the opportunity to attend the school, but he’s ecstatic nonetheless.
The icing on the cake for McFarlane is being logistically near Silicon Valley.
He hopes to make a positive contribution to society in the tech world.
McFarlane had narrowed down his list to Northwestern, Penn, Columbia and Harvard before selecting Stanford.
“I love Stanford, because they are the total package with their football program and academic excellence,” he said. “I’ve always been a huge Stanford football fan, and it’s pretty surreal to think about all the great players and coaches that have been part of their program.”
McFarlane said Poly’s rigorous demands to succeed academically have prepared him for this day.
He’s also incredibly thankful and humble to be part of Schmoke’s program and all the relationships he’s built over the last four-plus years.
In just the last two seasons, the McFarlane led Panthers went 19-3-1, including consecutive Prep League championships.
“The friends I’ve made are much more important than any athletic success I’ve ever been part of,” McFarlane said. “When football is gone, it’s those relationships that I hope last a lifetime.
He wants his friends and teammates to know how much he loves them and that this opportunity was made possible because they were part of his life.
No one, though, deserves more credit for McFarlane’s evolution as a person, student or athlete than Kevin and Stacey McFarlane.
Cameron couldn’t be more proud to be a McFarlane and he has mentioned in several conversations that his parents guidance, love and support have meant the world to him and his sisters, Cayla and Catherine.
“My parents are the reason for my success,” McFarlane said. “They made me who I am, and they shaped my will. If I’m ever questioning myself, they’re always there to reassure me. Without their love and support, I would have never been able to come close to the kind of success I’ve had thus far. I feel fortunate and it’s humbling to accomplish these things, and I hope they know how big of a role they played in this.”