John Jay’s Mike Daniello, one of the top junior recruits in the nation, has done some soul-searching after verbally committing to attend North Carolina on Sept. 28 and has decided to change his commitment and attend Johns Hopkins.

Daniello had narrowed his choices to UNC, Johns Hopkins and Syracuse before making his initial decision to commit to UNC.

Daniello, who led John Jay in scoring this past season, said then that the fact that both UNC and Hopkins have medical schools gave them a bit of an edge over Syracuse, where his brother, Chris, is a senior attackman on the two-time defending national champions.

“Ever since I was a child, I dreamed of playing for John Hopkins and worked very hard to turn that dream into a reality,” Daniello said. “The rich tradition and the opportunity to have a chance to be a part of that tradition was something that I could not let go of after my commitment to UNC.

“While UNC is a very special place and everybody who is a part of that program from the coaching staff down to the players are exceptional individuals,  I felt I had to chase my childhood dream of being a Blue Jay.”

Daniello said he informed the coaching staffs of both schools of his decision last week.

“(Hopkins) Coach (Dave) Pietramala  wanted me to make sure that I was changing my decision for the right reasons and that I spoke to UNC before committing to them,” Daniello said. “The next morning, I made the very difficult call to (North Carolina) Coach (Joe) Breschi.

“He was understanding of my decision and wished me well. Coach Breschi is a remarkable person who I have gotten to know very well throughout the recruiting process along with (UNC assistant) Coach (Pat) Myers and I wish them nothing but the best. After speaking with UNC,  I called Coach Pietramala  and officially committed to John Hopkins.”

Even minus Daniello, North Carolina will be pretty stacked at attack.

Fellow lefty attackmen Nick Galasso, a senior from West Islip, and Jimmy Bitter, a junior who grew up in Manhasset and now plays at the Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts, had committed to UNC prior to Daniello’s commitment. The nation’s No. 20-ranked senior, Boys Latin’s Pat Foster and No. 13-ranked junior, Joe Sankey of Penn Charter, Pa., also committed to Carolina.

There is now quite a contingent of current Section 1 stars heading to Hopkins. In addition to Daniello, senior attackman Kevin Interlicchio of Yorktown, senior defenseman Jameson Pickel of John Jay and junior defender Eddie Schurr of Somers have committed to the Blue Jays.

“I’m very excited to be teaming up again with Jameson as he is one of my best friends at John Jay,” Daniello said. “I’ve played against Eddie and Kevin in summer tournaments and games and I’m looking forward to being teammates with them at Hopkins. All three of them are great players and hopefully we can help bring another national championship to John Hopkins.”

Daniello was contacted by more than 30 Division I programs when the contact period began on Sept. 1.

Reach Joe Lombardi at

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23 Responses to “John Jay star Daniello has change of heart, now he'll become a Blue Jay”

  1. laxx says:

    Well, guess we will be able to see Kevin Interlicchio and Daniello on the same attack line… WOW! Nice work Petro 😉

  2. hoplax9 says:

    Welcome aboard bro 🙂

  3. George says:

    what was his reason for switching???

  4. lax says:

    Not sure but I can think of some reasons why he might reconsider. Hopkins has an exceptional medical school and Mike wants to study medicine. Lacrosse is the main sport at Johns Hopkins and has an excellent lacrosse tradition, unlike UNC. Also, Mike will probably have more playing time at Hopkins than at UNC considering the recruiting classes that UNC is getting.

  5. LaxFan says:

    “and has an excellent lacrosse tradition, unlike UNC. ”

    4 NCs is enough to qualify as “tradition” in my opinion..

  6. Striding Man says:

    Mike Daniello changed his commitment?! Wow, that’s great for Hopkins. Lookin good.

  7. laxg85 says:

    What attack line would you want?

    Kevin Interlicchio & Mike Daniello – Hopkins


    Nick Gallasso & Jimmy Bitter – Carolina

    Gonna be one heck of a rivalary in the coming years…

  8. WgLaxFan says:

    Hopkins gets great recruits but average results lately. UNC on the upswing, SU is always on the upswing, and Hopkins on the downswing. He is a great player but a bit small. Good luck in B’more.

  9. old timer says:

    small but very strong

  10. LionsDen says:

    Galasso and anyone else would be better than any attack. It’s an interesting question to ask but do you guys not realize yet Nicky G. is just at another level from any one?

    I would take Nicky G. and Little Bo Peep over any other 2 attackmen.

  11. Old Rugger says:

    Congrats Mike, in the end a better fit for grad school possibilities, playing time, and a team with historically a much, much stronger defense. And everyone knows what wins championships.

  12. Laximus says:

    Wow. What a turn of events. Way to get the scoop on this as always Joe.

  13. laxmaster says:

    well i think that he is easily gonna be the sexiest player not only at hopkins but in all of college lacrosse

  14. slacrosse says:

    Hey anyone know what other sports Mike plays?

  15. Joe Lombardi says:

    SL –

    Mike D. is playing varsity soccer this fall at John Jay. Last year, he played football.

  16. LAX says:

    Chris Daniello was actually John Jay’s first all-state soccer player in school history. I would guess Mike is pretty good too then even if it is his first year playing varsity soccer being a converted football player.

  17. slacrosse says:



  18. slacrosse says:


    if Daniello is “small”, think he’s taller then Connor English! Will be interesting to see if their size holds them back. Think strength, foot speed and skills will win the day!

  19. Laxolution says:

    Size doesn’t seem to be an impediment for Mike’s bro Chris at Cuse. He is one of the strongest and fastest players for the Orange.

  20. laxman says:

    Mike is already quite a bit taller than Chris as well! He’s still not the tallest but he’s so strong it really doesn’t matter. Plus he’s very athletic, extremely quick, him and KI will be scary for opponents of Hopkins.

  21. Laximus says:

    Lots of drama for Daniello these last couple months. First switching from NC to Hop and now losing his coach. Will be interesting to see how he responds to all of this stuff.

  22. Hopper says:

    Looking forward to having you at JHU Michael.

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