Blinn athletic department names Fred Kessel Buccaneer Backer of the Year

The Blinn College athletic department presented Fred Kessel with the sixth annual Buccaneer Backer of the Year Award at the Buccaneer Backer Golf Tournament at Bellville Country Club.

"I am very happy to receive this award," Kessel said. "I love going to the games and even travel to see the Buccaneers.

Kessel attended Blinn College in 1955-56 and has been a longtime supporter of the athletic department. He is married to Louise and has three daughters, Marcy Kmiec, Pam Zwahr, and Lou Niemeyer.

Blinn athletic director Scott Schumacher honored Kessel with the award in recognition of his commitment to Blinn athletics prior to the tournament.

"As an athletic department we are thrilled that Fred is this year's award winner," Schumacher said. "Fred is at all of our athletic events and we can always count on him. We all love him and his support."

Previous Buccaneer Backer of the Year Award winners include former Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships Christy Young, former Texas Speaker of the House Gus Mutscher, Biology Professor Karen Killion, and former Athletic Directors Don Wilhelm and Leroy Dreyer.

The Buccaneer Backer Club was formed to raise financial support and awareness for all athletic programs at Blinn College. A modest contribution of $100 helps the Buccaneer Backers provide aid in funding postseason travel, equipment, and facility upgrades. Last season, the Buccaneers won cheer and dance championships. The volleyball team placed seventh at nationals and the women's basketball team reached the Sweet 16 at the Division I National Championships.

Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 41 NJCAA national championships since 1987.