LEMONT – Last fall, Mike Luciano lined up next to Chris Giatras as teammates on the Lemont football team.
But going forward, Luciano might be assigned the task of tackling his friend and the former Indians’ running back because both are set to become members of different teams in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) this fall.
“We’ve been messing around with each other already and laughing about it,” Luciano said. “I’ve already told him I’m going to get the game-winning tackle against him down the road.”
A standout in the defensive secondary for Lemont in 2012, Luciano is headed to North Central College to continue his career.
“I really don’t know what to expect, but I’m excited,” he said. “I want to get in there and see how it differs from high school ball.”
Luciano, who is considering an engineering major, is joining a Cardinals program that has either won on its own or shared seven straight conference titles. Over that span, North Central has gone 45-4 in league play.
“We were expected to do a lot in high school, and it will be the same thing here [at North Central],” said Luciano, who was also considered playing at Saint Xavier University. “Their team is great. I also love the campus, and I liked the vibe that I got from the whole experience here.”
The cornerback is no stranger to winning on the football field. Last year, the Indians notched 11 victories while advancing to the Class 6A semifinals.
“I really only played on the varsity my senior year because I hurt my ankle as a junior,” he said. “Last year was a ton of fun. I had a lot of friends on the team, and we really liked playing together. We worked hard all summer and really went all out for last year. We had a great season even though it didn’t go exactly as planned in the playoffs. But it was still a good ride.”
Luciano is expected to remain in the secondary at North Central as a safety or cornerback, two positions he loves playing.
“When I was really young, I played quarterback and running back,” Luciano said. “But by the time I got to eighth grade, I was set on defensive back. You can make exciting plays and make big hits. That is what I like doing.”