COLLEGE STATION Texas A&M University President R. Bowen Loftin is to be roasted and the Aggies’ 12th Man Kick Off Team toasted Nov. 8 at the annual scholarship fundraising dinner hosted by the 12th Man Kickoff Team Foundation, the organization founded by Coach Jackie Sherrill.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the unique squad recruited straight out of the Texas A&M student body by Sherrill to play on kickoffs, beginning in 1983, when he was head coach of the Aggie football team. The team of non-athletic-scholarship students proved to be highly successful on the gridiron and garnered major and highly favorable national attention for the squad, the overall team and the university.
Proceeds from the fundraising dinner, which will be held at the Zone Club at Kyle Field, will benefit the 12th Man Kick Off Team Foundation missions, including donations in honor of Bryan Chandler, the Texas A&M Letterman's Association, and outreach programs assisting children's hospitals across Texas. Also four $5,000 scholarships will be awarded to well deserving Aggies including Andrew Owen '14, Rebecca Ulrich '16, Bethany Joseph '16 and Nellie Onwonga '17.
Coach Sherrill said President Loftin was selected for “roasting” because Dr. Loftin represents the essence of the 12th Man. “History will favorably record Dr. Loftin's leadership and courage in so many endeavors, not the least of which was our move to the SEC, in a fashion reminiscent of Earl Rudder," Sherrill said.
Created in 2007, the 12thMKOT® Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides scholarships to Texas A&M students. The foundation’s members make charitable appearances across the state, reaching out to A&M clubs, children in hospitals and other community activities “following the vision set by President Loftin of integrating and energizing past, present and future Aggies for the next 100 years,” notes Dan Leyendecker, president of the 12th Man Kick Off Team Foundation.