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Olympia’s Ware twins, Romelo and Camren, going separate ways to college | Recruiting Insider

For the first time since birth, Camren (Harvard) and Romelo Ware (Northern Illinois) will be separated this summer when they head off to college, where each will play football.

Camren, a slot receiver, has been committed to the Ivy League Crimson since last summer. Melo, a running back, waited out the process before quietly committing to the Huskies in November. Melo did not sign with Northern Illinois in December because, as his father, Warren Ware, put it, “Momma said, ‘If he ain’t leaving early then why sign early.'”

Point taken.

The Ware boys, Melo No. 21 and Cam No. 37 in the Sentinel’s 2024 Central Florida Super60, will sign their National Letters of Intent Wednesday during the NCAA’s second National Signing Day for the Class of 2024, as will numerous players across the nation. The NCAA transfer portal has wreaked havoc with high school seniors everywhere, as players try to find college homes.

Most players dream of landing a scholarship at a Football Bowl Subdivision program, but this season has seen the transfer portal strike harder than ever. In the Central Florida region for the Class of 2023, 40 players signed to FBS programs. This year, that number has dwindled to 31. And, during this second signing day, only five Central Florida players, Melo Ware, James Chenault (USF) of Jones, two Army commits, Owen Draves of Mount Dora Christian and Nolan Munroe of Bishop Moore, and Air Force commit Noah Daniels of Winter Park will sign scholarship papers at FBS programs.

Neither of the Ware brothers is concerned about their separation.

“He’s always going to be my brother and I don’t feel like the distance is going to do anything to us,” Melo said. “Last year kind of helped us understand how it’s going to be when we’re not on the field together, because he got hurt.

“But as far as us not going to the same school, I think we’re well prepared for that.”

Camren tore the ACL in his knee in the second game of last season.

“I don’t think anything is really going to change. He might be however far away, but I feel like I can always go see him,” Camren said. “Harvard only plays 10 games and then we have some Friday games and he has some Tuesday and Wednesday games, so if I’m not playing at Harvard, I’m going to be at my brother’s games.

“We can always call each other and we can always Facetime each other. He’ll chase his goals and do everything he needs to do, so I’m not worried about that either.”

Dad is certainly happy that his sons have accepted it. The boys will start their own adult lives, albeit in different time zones.

“It’s going to be different. It’s going to be Chicago to Boston, basically,” Warren Ware said. “It’s going to be a little different for me and grandma and mom, but we’re going to figure it out.

“They’ll see each other and we’ll visit them. We’ve already purchased those all-you-can fly things. So if one’s on a break, he can go see the other one.”

Warren has been through a lot of different situations with his boys since the two started playing youth league football. They’ve always played together, Melo at running back and Cam at receiver most of the time.

They formed was a star tandem at Lake Highland Prep as the Highlanders won 21 games in a row and back-to-back Sunshine State Athletic Association state titles in 2021 and ’22.

The twins transferred as seniors to Class 4 Metro Olympia, their zoned Orange County public school.

Warren said much of the recruiting difficulties his sons had were not necessarily because of their size, as many figured, with both standing about 5-foot-9 and Cam weighing 170 and Melo 195. He said it was the level of competition they were playing against in the small-school SSAA that caused recruiters to pause.

Both players have been waiting a long time for Wednesday’s big day.

“I was ready to sign in December,” Melo said. “I just feel Northern Illinois fit me best as a running back because Coach [Thomas] Hammock coached running backs in the NFL for five-plus years and he was a running back, so I felt like that part helped me.

“And also, Coach B [Wesley Beschorner], the running backs coach, is also the offensive coordinator, so that part helped me make my decision.”

Camren, with his 3.88 GPA, is ready to test the waters and academic challenges of Ivy League football.

“I’m ready to get this thing out of the way and go ahead get back to work,” he said.

Warren has had a proud-daddy, ear-to-ear grin for most of this journey.

“Your heart’s a little saddened because they’re going to be apart, but it’s only a two-hour plane flight away,” Warren said. “I couldn’t be more proud or more happy that they are both going where they want to go.”

Dad said Melo, who has a 3.72 GPA, had more offers coming in late during his senior season, where he ran for 1,507 yards and 19 touchdowns and helped lead Olympia to an 8-3 record and a playoff berth.

Melo was named to the Sentinel’s 2023 All-Area First Team.

“Melo chose Northern Illinois for all the right reasons,” Dad said. “He had a lot of bigger offers come in, but he’s a little bit more wise than I was at that age. I’m just unbelievably proud that he chose somewhere that really works for him.

“As for Cam, he knew he wanted to go to Harvard two years ago. So as a dad, I’m ecstatic. I might shed a tear. I’m not a crier. I’m a big guy. I don’t do a lot of crying.”

Cam also will run track at Harvard, while Melo is still undecided on his track future.

“My kids have never had an argument, never had a fight. They share everything. And I think that’s because they are polar opposites,” Warren said. “Like Melo watches TV, Cam is not a TV person. So as much as they rely on one another for all of the existential things, I think they’ll be more than OK because they’re both very well grounded.

“So it was sobering a little bit for them,” Warren continued. “But we knew months ago, when Cam committed to Harvard, Melo said he did not want to go to Harvard. We knew then they were going to different places.”

The future lies ahead.

“I’m ready to get it over with,” Warren said. “Ready to get papers signed and my mom and them are going to cook and we’ll celebrate a little bit like our family normally does. I can’t put it into words how proud I am as a dad. They’re good kids and they always try to do the right things.”

Chris Hays covers high school and college football, as well as college football recruiting. He can be found on X @OS_ChrisHays and on Instagram @OS_ChrisHays. He can be reached vis email at chays@orlandosentinel.com.