Mark Wasikowski Assistant Coach Years at Arizona: 9th Years on Lopez Staff: 13th
Ninth-year assistant Mark Wasikowski begins his 13th overall season as a member on Andy Lopez's staff. Having previously worked for three years at Florida with Lopez and one as a volunteer assistant at Pepperdine, Wasikowski also played two seasons for Lopez in Malibu and was the starting third baseman on the 1992 national championship team. His duties at Arizona include serving as the infield and third base coach, as well as the coordinator for recruiting.
Known as a highly regarded and fastidious recruiter, his prowess on the recruiting trail paid dividends for Arizona. The Wildcats' first four recruiting classes with Wasikowski on staff were tabbed in the top 10 in the nation (No. 10 in 2002, No. 4 in 2003, No 6 in 2004 and No. 7 in 2005 by Collegiate Baseball). He was also responsible for three outstanding classes during his stay at Florida, including Collegiate Baseball's second-ranked class in 1999.
His endeavors on the diamond are equally impressive. Working with the hitters and infielders, the Wildcats have batted over .300 as a team each of the last seven straight years and his first four seasons in Tucson saw Arizona improve its fielding percentage each consecutive year (.958 in 2002, .961 in 2003, and .964 in 2004, .966 in 2005).
At Florida, the 2001 Gator team finished with a fielding percentage nine points higher than the 2000 squad, which in turn finished with 23 less errors than the 1999 team. All three seasons that Wasikowski worked with the Gator infield, the team averaged better than a double play per game and the 2001 team set a school single season record with 74 double plays turned.
Prior to his stint at Florida, Wasikowski served two seasons as the graduate assistant at Southeast Missouri State. In 1998 he helped guide the Indians to a school record 32 wins and an appearance in the NCAA postseason in the Midwest Regional. SEMO hit a school record 90 home runs that season and had two players named All-America. While working on the diamond, he also earned his Masters degree in business at Southeast Missouri State.
In 1997 and again in `98 he served as the head coach of the El Dorado (Kan.) Broncos in the Jayhawk League, a summer collegiate wood bat league. His 1998 Bronco team won the national championship at the National Baseball Congress Championships in Wichita, Kan. He was recognized as the NBC Coach-of-the-Year that season after the championship.
A native of Seal Beach, Calif., Wasikowski graduated Los Alamitos High School in 1989 and began his collegiate playing career at the University of Hawaii. He transferred to Rancho Santiago Junior College after one season and then to Pepperdine in time for the 1992 national championship season. As the starting third baseman for the Waves, he was twice named All-West Coast Conference and hit .312 with 10 home runs. In 1999 he was elected to the Pepperdine Athletics Hall of Fame as part of the `92 title team.
Wasikowski, his wife, Lori Jo, and his two daughters, Joelle and Kelsey, make their home in Tucson.