Chagrin Falls senior football player Anthony DeCamillo / Photo courtesy Chagrin Falls football coach Mark Iammarino
When Anthony DeCamillo was asked recently to come up with an appropriate superhero-like moniker for himself, the Chagrin Falls High School senior initially tried to dodge the question by describing his favorite comic book character.
"Well, my favorite superhero is the Human Torch," DeCamillo replied.
The star prep football player was hesitant to say the first name that popped into his head, not wanting to appear arrogant or cocky, but then realized he could think of no better label.
"If I had to think of a conceited superhero name, it would be Mr. Everything," DeCamillo continued.
The nickname may not fit DeCamillo's humble personality, but it's hard to find an alternative that aptly describes his achievements as a student and athlete.
DeCamillo currently owns the highest cumulative GPA in his graduating class - 4.47 - while taking five Advanced Placement classes, bringing the total for his high school career to 12.
After hitting the books during each school day this fall, the 2010 first-team All-Geauga County selection has headed to the practice field to prepare to play wide receiver, free safety and punter for the Tigers varsity gridiron squad every Friday night.
Once football season ends - which appears to be several weeks away considering the team's current 6-0 record - the two-sport athlete will begin training for his final high school track season.
While competing in the spring sport for the first time last year, DeCamillo qualified to participate in the 4x400-meter relay at the 2011 Ohio Athletic Association Division II state track and field tournament with teammates Brad Munday, Nathan Lelonis and Bill Cale.
The past three summers, DeCamillo - an aspiring engineer - has used his time out of the classroom and away from the gridiron to prepare for life after school by helping out in the Cleveland Clinic's bariatric surgery department.
"I spent one summer as a junior ambassador at the Clinic, which is a volunteer position, and two summers working as a research assistant," DeCamillo said. "I basically did anything I could for anybody I could within our department to help them; from data entry to taking on the campuswide project of reorganizing work space and being featured in the weekly newsletter."
DeCamillo, a Cum Laude Society member, recently answered questions about his high school athletic career and plans for the future for WKYC's HighSchoolSports.net.
WKYC's HighSchoolSports.net: What is the best part of being a high school student-athlete?
Chagrin Falls senior Anthony DeCamillo: The best part of being a student-athlete is working hard all week; during the school day, at practice, at the gym, doing homework, [and] then being able to end each week participating in the greatest sport on earth. Running out under the lights [every] Friday night and facing off against a new opponent, with confidence, and the fans yelling your name from the stands is the best feeling I've ever felt. It serves as my main source of motivation throughout the week, especially knowing that I only have [a handful of] games left in my high school career.
WKYC: What are your goals for the time you have left as a high school football player?
DeCamillo: My overall goals in relation to football are to finish the regular season 10-0, return to the state championship and finally win it this year. That will be especially difficult this year because of our moving up to Division III, but I also feel that our roster this year gives us a better shot than in years past. My personal goals are to set a school record, either in receiving or interceptions, and to make All-State on either side of the ball.
WKYC: What has been the highlight of your high school athletic career thus far? Why?
DeCamillo: The highlight of my career is one of three events. The first [is] beating Aurora in overtime this year, the second is qualifying for and running [in] the state track meet my first year participating in the sport and the third is scoring a -yard touchdown with a fresh high ankle sprain in week 3 of the playoffs last year. All of these things are things that very few people get to experience - beating your rival as an underdog, running in front of thousands of fans and scoring a clutch TD hobbling down the sidelines - and the feeling and experience I gained from them will be something I remember for the rest of my life.
WKYC: What is the best advice you've received from a coach? Who gave you that advice?
DeCamillo: The best advice I've received came from my friend, mentor and trainer Brandon Lombardy. "Don't think; just do" and "visualize your success."
WKYC: What would you like your legacy as a Chagrin Falls Tiger student-athlete to be?
DeCamillo: I hope that my name stays in the program for a long time as one of those all-around student-athletes that future players aspire to be. I have been identified many times as a role model for other players and kids, and that's something that I take great pride in. When others aspire to do things like you do, then you can feel good about yourself.
WKYC: What is the best class you've ever taken? Why?
DeCamillo: AP English 11. It gave me an unprecedented intellectual confidence in my ability to communicate my ideas to others.
WKYC: What is your greatest non-athletic accomplishment?
DeCamillo: Probably being inducted into the Cume Laude Society. It is a representation of all my hard work for the past three years.
WKYC: What person from history would you most like to meet? Why?
DeCamillo: I would want to meet John F. Kennedy right as he was about to be named the new president of the United States. He was a person that I look up to as someone who was the perfect definition of success, and someone that I know I would get chills from just being in the same room as him. He is a major role model for me.
WKYC: What are your immediate plans after high school?
DeCamillo: To attend a prestigious university, major in some type of engineering and play football at that university.
WKYC: What are your career aspirations?
DeCamillo: I have very high career aspirations that act as my motivating force in terms of academics. I would ideally love to work for an engineering company like Lockheed Martin, starting as an engineer and working my way more into the business side of things. Hopefully, [advancing to] a high enough position to make significant decisions for the good of the company and, therefore, for the good of the country. I want my work to affect the whole country in a positive way.
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