Advertisement

Kicking's a snap for these Armwood brothers

 
SEFFNER - Armwood sophomore long-snapper Luis Olivo (left) and brother, junior kicker Adrian Olivo, hope to make a difference in the playoffs for the Hawks. The brothers practice every day together and so far this season have made good on 53 extra points and four-of-eight field goals with a long of 43 yards. Taken 11-13-17 by Scott Purks
SEFFNER - Armwood sophomore long-snapper Luis Olivo (left) and brother, junior kicker Adrian Olivo, hope to make a difference in the playoffs for the Hawks. The brothers practice every day together and so far this season have made good on 53 extra points and four-of-eight field goals with a long of 43 yards. Taken 11-13-17 by Scott Purks
Published Nov. 16, 2017

SEFFNER — Luis Olivo leans over, reaches down, grabs hold of a football and rifles it between his spread feet.

Seven yards behind, a kneeling person, sometimes his father, Blas, but usually teammate Warren Thompson, receives the ball and places it on a tee.

Luis' brother, Adrian, swings his right leg and kicks the ball, sending it over Luis, up to 50 yards away.

At the very minimum, Luis and Adrian do this dozens of times a day.

"Every day," said Luis, sitting next to Adrian. "Even on Saturday and Sunday."

But that's not all.

Every morning at 5 a.m., Luis, a 16-year-old Armwood High sophomore, and Adrian, a 17-year-old junior, rise from bed and do crunches, squats, pushups, jumping jacks and so on.

"We do that morning routine about an hour and a half," Adrian said. "Every day."

Add it up over the last three years and the Olivo brothers have snapped and kicked footballs thousands upon thousands of times, along with thousands of crunches and so on.

"If you want it to be second nature you have to do it thousands of times," Luis said.

Adrian chimed in with his huge grin, and said, "A million times."

The hope is that in that split second during a game on Friday night when Armwood coach Evan Davis yells — "Kicking team! Kicking team!" — the Olivos are more than prepared.

"At that point, because we have done it so many times, we are on auto pilot," Adrian said. "We don't think about it. We don't hear anything."

Luis added: "We don't hear the crowd or the band or the announcer. We zone out."

The holder in this scenario during games — Thompson, a 6-foot-5 strapping receiver who towers over the 5-foot-9 Olivos — said the brothers give him tremendous confidence.

"I believe we are going to make (the field goal or extra point) every time because (the Olivos) believe in themselves," said Thompson, who has committed to Oregon. "I know they are going to do their job. All I have to do is do my job."

Truer words may have never been spoken, especially on extra points, where the Olivos have made 53. The only misses? Two were blocked. On field goals, the group is 4-of-8 — including a long of 43 — barely missing on the failed attempts.

"And not once have we ever had a bad snap," Thompson said. "Every time I get the ball where it's supposed to be, within a few inches of the same place every time."

For the Olivos, whose family moved to Seffner this summer after living for years in Plant City, it's all about continuing the daily routine to prepare for a possible big moment.

"We want to have the state championship on the line and be called to make the winning kick," said Luis, who started playing soccer at 3 years old and switched to football at 11 as an offensive lineman before going strictly to long snapping. "We would love that chance."

"Every kicker should want the chance to make a kick to win the game," said Adrian, who also has played soccer since he was 3 before giving football place-kicking a chance at 14. "We dream about that chance. We would want to win it for our team and for everybody."

Stay updated on Tampa Bay’s sports scene

Stay updated on Tampa Bay’s sports scene

Subscribe to our free Sports Today newsletter

We’ll send you news and analysis on the Bucs, Lightning, Rays and Florida’s college football teams every day.
Subscribers Only

You’re all signed up!

Want more of our free, weekly newsletters in your inbox? Let’s get started.

Explore all your options

In the longer run, the brothers, who say that snapping and kicking footballs every day has only made them closer, the hope is to take their place-kicking act to college.

"I've never heard of brothers who are a long snapper and a kicker like us on the same college team," Luis said. "Maybe we can be the first. I think we can do it. It would be a good story."