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Armella wins OL MVP at Rivals Miami, discusses UM recruitment

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Stefan Adams

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2022 St. Thomas (FL) 4-star OT Julian Armella was a clear top performer at today’s Rivals Miami Camp, dominating the competition on his way to OL MVP and earning an invite to the Rivals Five-Star Challenge over the summer in Atlanta. It was the second time he's taken home Rivals Miami OL MVP honors in his career, with the first coming in 2019.

“I think I did a little bit better than at the UA (Under Armour) Camp, you could say that,” Armella said. “I had to work on my technique and fundamentals. Just been working on my hands and footwork, making sure I get the stab and punch down, that’s the main thing.”

Back in February, Armella released a top 7 that included LSU, Alabama, Florida, Ohio State, Florida State, and Clemson, along with the local Miami Hurricanes. The 6’6” 285-pound prospect says he maintains that top list, and Armella says he recently set his first official visit from that group as well.

“Right now, I still have my same top 7,” Armella said. “I have one of my official visits confirmed to LSU, I’m going up from June 5th to the 8th. The main thing it’s going to come down to is when I take my visits, what place feels like home and what doesn’t. I think when I go up there and experience all the coaches, the players, the environment, that will be the main key thing.”

While the Tigers are set to receive one of Armella’s five official visits shortly, the Hurricanes will not be getting one from the St. Thomas star due to his close proximity to the UM campus.

“Since it’s my hometown school, I’ll probably just go for an unofficial visit there,” Armella said of UM. “I talked it over with coach (Manny) Diaz and explained how much I love Miami, but I just feel it is in my best interest to use my officials on schools that are farther away from home.”

Of course, Armella already has a familiarity with the UM campus having been a frequent visitor to Miami before the COVID pandemic shut down campus trips across the country, and he attended UM’s last organized recruiting event, a Junior Day event in January of 2020.

“I ended up going to the junior day, it was really good,” Armella said. “I got to hang out with Manny Diaz, I got to see some of the UM players, it was just a really cool environment.”

Speaking of the UM players, Armella’s connections run deep at Miami, as he has played with multiple Hurricanes over his time in South Florida football, and Armella says he still keeps in touch with a few of them.

“Al Blades went to St. Thomas when I was there, you got Mike Harley, Xavier Restrepo – I know [Restrepo’s] balling out over there this spring,” Armella said. “Me and him used to always come out to these camps together, so it’s not a surprise to hear he’s doing well at the next level.”

While Armella also often speaks with Diaz, his main point of contact at UM has been OL coach Garin Justice as his potential future position coach. The STA star feels that the pair have built a strong bond thus far and he is looking forward to continuing to grow the relationship.

“I like coach Justice a lot, we’ve been having good communication back and forth,” Armella said. “The main thing with him is just showing me he can produce, and when you look at Miami, they’ve done a really good job of turning around the program so far with coach Diaz in charge. I really can’t complain.”

Ultimately, Armella feels the hometown Hurricanes have a lot to offer him, both location-wise and in terms of the trajectory of the program under Diaz.

“Obviously, the hometown location, they’re right there,” Armella said of UM. “It would be convenient for my mom, dad. But aside from that, it’s just a really good program.

“They’ve already turned around the program in my opinion in two years. I think it’s about just continuing to develop a relationship with me and coach Justice - I like how they’re recruiting me and I like where they’re going as a program.”

One program that has long been considered a major factor in Armella’s recruitment has been the Florida State Seminoles, as Armella’s father Enzo played at FSU in the early 90’s and Julian grew up around the FSU program, going to many events and camps in Tallahassee over the years.

“With me, they haven’t really focused on the legacy aspect as much, really they are just recruiting me for who I am,” Armella said of FSU. “Of course, my dad is a factor, and it would be cool to say that the legacy committed, but at the end of the day, I talk with them because it’s a good program, not because I’m a legacy.”

Don’t expect an early end to this recruitment, as Armella says he plans to continue the recruiting process into the winter.

“I want to do something special and commit at the end of my senior year on ESPN or at the All-American game, so it will be something like that.”

**Armella announced shortly after this interview that he would be transferring back to St. Thomas from Columbus for his senior season.**

 

JgDaCane

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These kids still really don't value a UM offer the way they should. Imagine telling Nick Saban "Coach I'm not taking an official to Alabama but keep recruiting me" He'd laugh in the kids face. Wish we took a tougher stance on some of these local guys once a for all.
 

Damiencane86

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These kids still really don't value a UM offer the way they should. Imagine telling Nick Saban "Coach I'm not taking an official to Alabama but keep recruiting me" He'd laugh in the kids face. Wish we took a tougher stance on some of these local guys once a for all.
Saban can do that cuz he has 7 rings to flash in front of prospects faces
 

Hoyacane1620

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Rivals has a short interview up this morning. Their story makes it seem a little more "undecided" as to what he will do on June 1st. Armella says he speaks to Manny all the time and they have a good relationship. Also likes Garin Justice alot. Can see how the program is turning around - Ryan Rodriguez tells him all the time how much he likes it.

From Rivals story:
Armella also said that on June 1 he’ll either go to FSU for an unofficial visit or to UM for a recruit barbecue.
If he chooses to go to Florida State that day he says not to read into it too much and that it would be more a case of wanting to see a school he hasn’t already been to in the last few years.

“I’ve visited Miami two or three times, Florida and UCF, haven’t visited anywhere else - the last time I went to FSU I was a little kid, so I’m looking forward to that a lot, “Armella said.

He adds “Since June 1 is the first day (of visits) it’s kind of hectic. It’s been kind of hectic. I may go to Miami, may go to FSU (the first). Not 1,000 percent sure as of right now.”
 

TallyCane

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So he’s not OV’ing and not attending the big Cookout but he’s going back to FSU after just visiting for their JV spring game.

Looks pretty clear to me.
He didn’t make it to the spring game but point still stands. His tune will change when he’s sees they haven’t gotten any better.
 

Paranos

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Rivals has a short interview up this morning. Their story makes it seem a little more "undecided" as to what he will do on June 1st. Armella says he speaks to Manny all the time and they have a good relationship. Also likes Garin Justice alot. Can see how the program is turning around - Ryan Rodriguez tells him all the time how much he likes it.

From Rivals story:
Armella also said that on June 1 he’ll either go to FSU for an unofficial visit or to UM for a recruit barbecue.
If he chooses to go to Florida State that day he says not to read into it too much and that it would be more a case of wanting to see a school he hasn’t already been to in the last few years.

“I’ve visited Miami two or three times, Florida and UCF, haven’t visited anywhere else - the last time I went to FSU I was a little kid, so I’m looking forward to that a lot, “Armella said.


He adds “Since June 1 is the first day (of visits) it’s kind of hectic. It’s been kind of hectic. I may go to Miami, may go to FSU (the first). Not 1,000 percent sure as of right now.”
Thx for sharing.

Go Canes
 

HurikaneMarc

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We're n his top 7. No reason to get excited and no reason to lose sleep. When he pares his list down to 2 or 3 and we're still involved then its time to get anxious. Top 7's are usually a recruits starting point
 
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