An Interview With Mitchell Kozak

A conversation between The Shield's Editor in Chief and one of the top athletes in the Class of 2019


Shane Palma, Editor in Chief

Recently, I was able to sit down with multi-sport varsity athlete Mitchell Kozak. Mitch is a senior at FPM who is the football team’s quarterback and on the first line for lacrosse. He is currently committed to the University of Maryland-Baltimore County for lacrosse. After finally maneuvering around our busy schedules, Mitch and I were finally able to chat and tackle some of the tough questions.

What made you want to play football this year even after committing for lacrosse? And did you consider not playing football at all?

It never crossed my mind to not play football. I have played since I was in kindergarten and it’s a sport I still love to play even though I will be playing lacrosse in college.

Who are your role models and how have they influenced you as a player?

My role models are the past lacrosse and football players who have left the foundation for both programs. They have made me want to build off the foundation they created to make our lacrosse and football team successful.

Why did you choose UMBC? Were there other options you were strongly considering?

I choose UMBC because it has many different major options and the location is a perfect college atmosphere. Also, there is a great coaching staff that has developed an awesome sense of culture on the lacrosse team. Along with UMBC, I was considering St Johns and High Point University.

Why did you choose to play lacrosse in college over football? Was there a deciding factor?

Even though I love to play football, lacrosse has been my number one sport since 2nd grade and I have never thought about playing anything else in college.

What responsibilities have come with being a multi-sport athlete?

Being a football and lacrosse player means that even though it’s football season, I still have to practice lacrosse to make sure I don’t get rusty.

What expectations have you set for yourself when it comes to both sports?

I have always tried to perform to the best of my ability in both sports. This means outworking my opponents in lacrosse and football every day.

How has being the varsity team quarterback made you a better leader?

Being the senior quarterback this year has showed me that the rest of my teammates will follow my emotions. If I’m being negative during a game, it is likely that the rest of the team will feel the same way.

As graduation rapidly approaches, what is something you will take away from your playing time at FPM?

Something that I will take away from my time at FPM is that hard work will always beat talent and those who work hard will be successful.