Fox 40 Prospect Challenge (Central): Melo searching for the CFC100

Andy Melo recently took his football talents to a prep school called the Royal Imperial Collegiate of Canada (RICC), where they play a full American football schedule against some of the best high schools in the States.

“It was a big change for me leaving all my friends and my school to live in St. Catherines at RICC,” said Andy. “It didn’t take long to make friends that are from all over the world.” Andy says it is “truly amazing” to have friends from each coast of Canada, Europe, and Mexico.

The RICC had a pretty good season for a first year team with a record of 4-6 in regular season, but they learned a lot after every game.

“I have greatly improved as a player this past high school season,” commented Andy, “my defensive coordinator coach Joe Hagins and my defensive back coach Jykine Bradley have helped develop me to become an overall better player.”

The Knight says the experience of travelling down to the States every weekend and playing American football is amazing. “I have travelled almost all of the eastern USA, from New Jersey to Florida,” added Andy, “our team has been everywhere!”

Over the summer, Andy played in the Ontario Football Association (OFA) with the North Halton Crimson Tide. The Tide had an overall great year and had a lot of fun. They ended up losing in the semi-finals, but it was a great experience and a great year for development.

Last year, Andy also participated in the Fox 40 Prospect Challenge (formally OPC) and had a really great experience. He met a lot of new people and it was his first time playing at a higher level than just his regular high school or summer league.

“I ended up winning the Defensive MVP and I was very proud to have gotten it,” commented the defensive back, who also met the Head Coach of RICC, Jeff Brown, at the combine. “If I did not meet him at [FPC], I might never have gotten the chance to go to RICC,” continued Andy.

Going back to the school year before joining RICC, he played at Georgetown District High School where he developed a love for the sport during his junior varsity seasons.

His goals for this year’s FPC are simple, get more exposure for CIS schools and play with all his old teammates from last year. “This [FPC] year will be really fin playing with my old friends,” added the Knight.

Aside from potential universities, the 2018 graduate also has his sights set on the CFC100 as it means more exposure and more offers from different schools.

“The Top 100 list [has been] a goal of mine ever since last season,” said Andy. “I want to work as hard as I can to be classified in the top 100 players in Canada.”

During the offseason, his coaches and strength trainers have set many planned workouts that consist of weightlifting and lots of agility. Andy is also planning on attending a couple of camps down in the States during this offseason, although in previous seasons he would continue to play AA hockey with the Halton Thunder.

On the field one of his football idols is Richard Sherman because he is someone Andy wants to be. Sherman graduated high school with a 4.0 GPA and got a scholarship to Stanford. He graduated with a degree and now plays professional football. “I would also like to get a scholarship to an Ivy League school in the States and try to get a chance at playing professional football, but still have my degree,” explained Andy.

Moreover, Andy loves football because when you are on a team, you create a family with all of your teammates.

“I love all the new people you end up meeting and becoming great friends with when you know you would have never met them if they were not on your team,” explained the Knight. “For instance, my roommate’s from Calgary [and] I would have never met them, but we are now great friends.”

He also loves the feeling of going out to play a game and just looking at the crowd watching you and ready for you to make something happen.

Andy also really enjoys the sport of football itself.

“A big part of the game is the mental part of the play calling and the covering down of the defensive players,” commented the Knights. “I love having the ability to totally customize plays and make sure everyone of my defensive players is on the same page.”

Andy Melo
Positions: Free safety, cornerback and halfback
Height/Weight: 5’10, 170lbs
Teams: Royal Imperial Knights (Prep School) and North Halton Crimson Tide (OFA)
Considerations: U of T, McMaster, uOttawa, UBC and Simon Fraser
Class: 2018


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