Addison Trail promotes Bazant
When Chris Bazant accepted a teaching job at Addison Trail, one thought stayed in his mind.
It felt like home.
Seven years later Bazant deepened his roots by becoming Addison Trail's new varsity head football coach.
The news became official on Monday when the DuPage High School District 88 board approved the hiring. Bazant met with the team on Tuesday and plans to hit the ground running.
"I really believe in the kids we have," said Bazant, a 2003 graduate of Andrew who went on to play football at North Central College. "It's a huge learning curve going from player to coach, but I've had great role models."
Bazant has been a varsity assistant in each of his seasons with the Blazers, along the way focusing on just about every position on the field. Before coming to Addison Trail, he spent a year at York and three seasons at Mattoon.
At Addison Trail, though, Bazant saw great similarity between the Blazers program and his own experience at Andrew in Tinley Park.
"That's what brought me over here," he said. "It reminded me of back home and that blue-collar mentality. These kids have that same hardworking attitude."
Bazant, 35, is a psychology teacher in Addison Trail's Social Studies Department. He stressed he couldn't have accepted his new job without the support of his wife, Mallory, and their three young daughters.
Bazant replaces Paul Parpet Jr., who stepped down in November after 10 years at the helm and 26 years in the program.
"Winning is definitely important," Bazant said. "But football teaches us about life and it's a process. If we go through the process the right way, we'll get to where we want to be."