Sports have always held a special place in Andy Mazurczak’s life. Mazurczsak is a 2012 graduate of Ridgewood High School, playing both soccer and basketball.
From a young age, Andy was active and involved with sports. Around first grade, he started playing soccer on a travel team. In fourth grade, he realized that basketball is where his passion was and he decided he wanted to pursue it and take it more seriously. Because of this he played AAU travel basketball for several years.
During his athletic career at Ridgewood, he had several noteworthy accomplishments. He was on the 2010 state qualifying Varsity Boys soccer team. During basketball, he was on the team that made it to the sectional finals. Personally through basketball, he earned the All Conference and All State awards; during his senior year he was Conference MVP.
An impressive high school basketball career opened doors for Mazurczak. He received a scholarship to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside to play basketball for their D2 program. One of his most notable collegiate career experiences was playing on a D2 all-star team that went to Brazil. In 2012, Mazurczak graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Sport Management.
After graduation, Mazurczak was greeted with an opportunity not many are greeted with, the opportunity to continue his basketball career. Mazurczak connected with roughly five agents before signing with his current agent.
Mazurczak’s parents are both of polish descent and moved to the United States a year before Andy was born. Being a dual-citizen of the United States and Poland, he had the dream of playing for the Polish National Team. His agent reached out to the coach and he earned a spot on the Polish National B-Team. In June after college graduation, he flew out to Poland for training camp, then to China to play.
From then on, it has been a whirlwind of traveling and basketball for Mazurczak. After his stint with the Polish National Team, he spent his first pro-year was in Greece for ten months. The following summer he was invited back to the Polish National Team, but this time on the A-Team. This experience with the Polish National Team was his favorite experience to date playing in high level basketball. He was then signed for a season in Germany.
In the past 2 years, Andy has been to ten countries. When he was in Germany, he woke up one morning and made a day trip to Prague. Having the opportunity to travel has really opened his eyes, because a lot of people can’t travel like he has. He has really enjoyed seeing the world and cultures from different perspectives.
Well where is Andy now, you ask?
For the past 4 months, Mazurczak has been back in the states. Which is the longest time he has been home since college. Last week, he left for Spain where he is playing for Cáceres Patrimonio de la Humanidad of the LEB Oro.
Mazurczak encourages kids to pursue participating in sports.
“I don’t think they [kids] take advantage or understand where sports could take them. For me, i’m getting to travel the world. It’s unbelievable and i’m getting paid to do it.. it’s pretty cool. Some people take these opportunities for granted and for me that’s one thing i try not to do. I understand basketball isn’t going to be forever, so I try to take advantage of the times I do have with it.”
During the summer when he is home, Mazurczak continues to stay involved with the Ridgewood basketball program by helping with shootouts and camps.
One of his favorite memories of growing up in Norridge was going to school with people he’s known since primary school at J. Giles Elementary. He has valued the close-knit community of Norridge and has stayed in contact with friends, teachers and coaches.
A piece of advice to current students from Mazurcazk is, “Stay patient with it. A lot of kids get discouraged because things aren’t working. Things don’t always happen quickly and you have to put the work in. Stay patient and consistently work hard every day. Trust in yourself.”
Where does the future hold for Mazurczak? He believes we should live in the present and not look to much into the future.
Mazurczak explained, “So many people are focused too much on the future and lose sight of the present. I plan for the future, but i don’t live too far in the future. I’m just worried about today and getting better today; with the hopes that it will grow into something special.”