Bartlett's Priami confirms transfer to St. Charles North
Bartlett quarterback Michael Priami will transfer to St. Charles North for his senior season, he announced last week.
Priami was named all-Upstate Eight Conference and all-area honorable mention last fall as a junior. He helped lead the Hawks to an 8-2 record, a three-way tie for the league title and the school's second straight playoff appearance.
Frank and Megan Priami have wanted to move the family to St. Charles for years, according to Michael, whose freshman brother Zach plays volleyball and basketball.
"We wanted to move from Bartlett my freshman year but we couldn't find a house," Michael said. "The move was just the best thing for our family. We're moving four houses away from my uncle."
Priami (5-foot-11, 160 pounds) last season completed 109 of 201 attempts for 1,440 passing yards and 17 touchdowns. He carried 23 times for 158 yards and 5 scores.
"I wouldn't say it's a surprise because I know they've been trying to move to St. Charles for pretty much his entire high school career," Bartlett coach Matt Erlenbaugh said of the transfer. "But absolutely it's a loss. There's a reason why he was a starting quarterback. I love the kid. He's a great player. Definitely, St. Charles North is getting a heck of a player. I do believe he's a scholarship kid. At what level you never know, but I do see him getting money for school."
St. Charles North coach Rob Pomazak said he had no contact with the family.
"I found out through the grapevine," Pomazak said. "People started telling me he was going to come here. I said I'll believe it when I see it. Finally, I got a phone call from someone saying they had bought a house and he was going to enroll next year. I had no idea.
"I don't go looking for kids. I don't go recruiting or asking kids to come to our school. At no point did that ever transpire. I'll coach whoever walks in the door. I'm sure people are saying that we were courting him. Actually, we have a pretty talented group of quarterbacks coming back."
Priami is leaving a talented team. Bartlett returns wide receivers Hayden Angell, Nick Kantzavelos and Nick Bucaro and future Division-I tight end Alec Pallela. That stable of returning receivers last season made 60 of the team's 101 receptions and caught 11 of its 17 touchdowns. And the offensive line is "probably the best Bartlett has had in a long time," Erlenbaugh said.
"Those have been my friends since I was 4-years-old," Priami said. "I'll miss Bartlett a lot. But St. Charles North is a very good school. I can't wait to go there and show what I have. I made my choice and I'm just happy to move forward."
Erlenbaugh said junior Xander Salyers and sophomore Jacob Searce are among the leading candidates to replace Priami under center.
Pomazak said Priami will be part of "an open competition" for the starting quarterback job along with junior Sam DeDobbelaere and sophomore Aidan Pieper. Junior running back Nick DeMarco will also play quarterback in certain packages.
St. Charles North's open quarterback competition will likely be abbreviated due to the IHSA's current ban on summer contact days.
"If we only get August, we're really going to have to use our time wisely in how we evaluate these guys and give everyone an opportunity to show what they can do," Pomazak said. "Then make the best decision for the team. It's going to make our job pretty difficult, but it's a good problem to have."