By Sammy Greben
Many students at our school know only one side of Science Department Head Mr. Bradley Krauz: the teacher side. But how many of you knew he was a college athlete?
In fact, Krauz comes from a family of athletes; his mom was a nationally-ranked tennis player and his dad played baseball in college. Encouraged by his parents who “always instilled in [him] a desire to work hard to improve,” he started playing tennis when he was five years old and really got serious at age twelve. By the time he was 14 years old, he was ranked tenth on Long Island. Following this accomplishment, he broke his leg and was unable to play for the next two years. By his senior year of high school, he had recovered and was able to get back on track, leading him to be recruited by The University of Rochester.
In the fall of 1998, Mr. Krauz started at the University of Rochester with a Division III athletic program. He played on the tennis team for the first three years of his college experience. He played both singles and doubles, typically playing second singles or third doubles. He owes most of his success to his drive to “work to outlast [his] opponent.”
“The best thing about tennis is that it is a game for life and a game that can build some great friendships.” Mr. Krauz was the captain of the University of Rochester tennis team his junior year and felt that “being a part of a team in college is one of the highlights of my college experience.”
While some find it difficult to juggle both sports and academics, Mr. Krauz does not relate. “If anything, I found it helpful because it forced me to manage my time and not have huge amounts of empty space to fill with other things.” Plus, his classes were spread out, so he had more than enough time to fulfill his requirements.
.Mr. Krauz feels that students who want to play college sports must be “totally committed and willing to sacrifice certain components of typical college life.” While being a part of a college team may limit some athletes social lives, Mr. Krauz still found plenty of time for friends and socializing.
While Mr. Krauz’s college career has ended, his tennis career has not. Over the summer, he plays competitively as a member of a USTA travel team that practices on the weekends and throughout the winter. He channels his current and past experience playing in order to coach the girls varsity tennis team at South every year.