Pair of Edmonton Huskies teammates commit to York

York adds two out-of-province teammates to their Class of 2018.

Defensive back Gaetano Minto and outside linebacker Darian Nitti from the Edmonton Huskies (CJFL) kindled their friendship on the football field, and now they will continue to grow it at university after signing with the York Lions.

Gaetano Minto

Courtesy of Gaetano Minto.

When it came to choosing a university, Gaetano Minto has no doubt in his mind that York is the place where he belongs. “My decision making in picking the place where I wanted to bring my talents was easy; York University was the answer,” Minto said. “The coaching staff is bless. I only have the highest respect for them. They know what they want and are straight forward.”

Two members of the staff, in particular, have stood out in Minto’s mind. He said that Sammy Okpro, the team’s defensive coordinator, has “one of the most gifted minds I’ve ever been around,” as well as Warren Carney, the head coach.

“The resume these guys have is impressive,” Minto said. “From the rest of the coaching staff I have had the pleasure to meet, they’re all guys I know I can play under because of the mindset they bring and the knowledge they carry can help me take my craft to the next level. Not to mention, (they are the) most genuine guys to be around.”

The 6’1, 195lbs halfback and corner was also impressed with the current York roster, which he called “gifted players.”

Before playing with the Edmonton Huskies, the product of Athabasca, Alberta, played high school ball with the Athabasca Pacers (Wheatland Football League). He is interested in taking management or business.

It is only a matter of time before Minto is hitting the field with the Lions, eager to start a new season. “I know the type of player I am and I’m sure I can help out with the big things they (the coaching staff) has planned,” Minto said. “I signed the same day as my best friend (Darian Nitti). I can’t wait to play with him at York.”

Darian Nitti

Courtesy of Darian Nitti.

When Darian Nitti flies out to York, he will have Minto to keep him company on those long flights. When he reaches the York locker room, he will already know one coach very well, Okpro, who was his defensive coordinator with the Huskies.

“Playing for him (Okpro) made committing to York that much easier,” Nitti said, adding that the “coaching staff is intelligent.”

Trekking in from his home in Kelowna, BC, Nitti added that he chose York “because of the atmosphere and that mentality they have was just different than other places I’ve been too. I believe I can grow as an athlete there and it made me feel at home.”

The Huskies’ 2015 defensive rookie of the year stands at 6’0, 210lbs and is interested in sociology. Before playing three seasons with the Huskies, he played three years with the Rutland Voodoos (BC Secondary Schools Football Association).

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