April 2, 2010
Misialek known as a winner on and off the diamond
Whether it is studying for an exam or preparing for his next at bat,
Cowley College sophomore Brad (B.J.) Misialek puts his best effort
into whatever it is he is doing. His efforts have not gone unnoticed
as he was recently named the school’s April Student of the Month.
Misialek is a Pre-Engineering major from Edmond, Oklahoma. He is the son of Clint and Brandi DeSpain and Rich Misialek.
Grandparents are Lynn and Gloria Bowman of Sulphur, OK, Chester (deceased) and Francis Misialek of Edmond, OK, and Jack and Dena DeSpain of Edmond, OK. He has a brother Mac 13, and sisters Terri 10, and Kelli 3.
Prior to coming to Cowley, he excelled academically and athletically at Edmond (OK) Memorial High School.
As a member of his high school baseball team Misialek was named All-City, All-State, All-Edmond, and was a member of the Sunbelt All-Tournament Team. He helped Edmond Memorial finish as the state runner-up his junior year.
He finished his senior year by serving as his class salutatorian at graduation, and finished 16th academically out of 467 students in his graduating class.
Hoping to sign to play baseball at the University of Oklahoma, Misialek ended up instead signing to play at Cowley thanks to a former high school teammate of his in Connor Farris, who played for the Tigers during the 2007 and 2008 seasons. Farris told Cowley assistant coach Darren Burroughs about Misialek and the rest is history.
“Coming to Cowley made it an easier transition for me,” Misialek said. “The people are real friendly here. It’s been great, I wouldn’t trade it.”
After playing centerfield in high school, Misialek made the move to second base once arriving at Cowley. As a freshman, Misialek batted .377 with a team-leading nine home runs and 58 runs batted in as he helped Cowley capture its third straight conference title. Misialek also helped Cowley win the Region VI championship and advance to the JUCO World Series in Grand Junction, CO. where he belted two home runs in the Tigers’ three games.
Cowley had to win five games in three days to earn the right to play at the JUCO World Series. Misialek played a pivotal role in Cowley advancing as he went 12-for-28 with seven RBIs at the Region VI Tournament.
“Winning the Region VI title was the most amazing feeling I have ever had because all we went through,” Misialek said. “After we won it was like there was this unbelievable weight lifted off my shoulders, I was numb from head to toe.”
Misialek was named Second-Team All-Conference as a freshman, and was also selected Academic All-Conference. He currently maintains a 3.82 grade point average.
Along with being a standout member of the baseball team, Misialek was a Cowley Captain last fall and serves as a resident assistant in the Storbeck Dormitory.
Instructors have had many positive comments about Misialek.
“I first met Brad when he was a student in my public speaking class,” Humanities Department instructor Dejon Ewing said. “It soon became apparent that this young man always came to class and that he always came prepared. His work ethic and intelligence produced quality class presentations, and his speeches most often served as the standard for achievement and a model for others in the course. Brad Misialek is exactly the caliber of student that any college hopes to attract. His achievements both in the classroom, on the athletic field, and with the people with which he has met and worked have made him a standout.”
Despite playing with a shoulder injury that has limited him to seeing action in only 17 of the Tigers’ first 27 games, Misialek has managed to reach base safely in each game he has appeared in and is batting .344 with 19 runs scored and 17 runs batted in. He belted a three-run homer to help Cowley sweep a doubleheader at Kansas City on Thursday and has the Tigers in first place in the Jayhawk Conference Eastern Division with a record of 18-9 overall and 12-4 in the conference.
His baseball coach, Dave Burroughs, is proud of what Misialek has accomplished.
“B.J. is outstanding in every way,” Dave Burroughs said. “He is the epitome of a student-athlete. I don’t know anybody who deserves this award any more than him.”
For Misialek, who is highly respected by his peers and instructors, the honor came as a surprise.
“Baseball players are not really thought of as scholar athletes, so it’s nice to kind of change that stereotype,” Misialek said.
Baseball is something Misialek has played since an early age. By the time he was five years old he was a switch hitter, with his dad, Rich, having taught him how to hit from either side of the plate.
“My dad bred me to play baseball,” Misialek said. “I love the history of the sport, how it is a part of our country.”
He feels his time at Cowley has made him a better player and prepared him for the next level of competition.
“It has been life changing, I have learned so much about baseball,” Misialek said.
Misialek credits his mother, Brandi, and father, Rich, with helping him get to where he is today.
“My mother has always been my conscience and my dad has always pushed me to get better in baseball,” Misialek said.
After Cowley, Misialek hopes to continue his baseball career at a school with a good engineering program. After college he plans to use his degree to start his career in the energy or pharmaceutical industries.
However, he still has some thins he wants to accomplish at Cowley before graduating in May.
“After having a taste of playing at the (JUCO) World Series, I want to make it back,” Misialek said. “We have got the talent, we just got to have the want to.”