The Blinn College Buccaneers were picked as co-favorites to win the toughest conference in the NJCAA football in 2012.
Blinn along with Trinity Valley Community College were selected as co-favorites to win the SWJCFC by the conference’s coaches on July 27, 2012. The Buccaneers and the Cardinals each wound up with 56 poll points.
Blinn has been one the most successful NJCAA programs over the last 20 years. Since 1994, the Buccaneers have posted a 145-47 record. Blinn has also won four national championships, 14 conference crowns during this period and 12 bowl game appearances.
Blinn was expected to return four All-SWJCFC team selections in 2012. However, first team All-Conference quarterback Eric Matthews decided to transfer to the University of Memphis on August 9.
The Bucaneers brought in more than 30 newcomers including a few NCAA Division I transfers.
Location: Brenham, Tex.
2011 year in review
Blinn, 9-2 overall in 2011, went undefeated during the regular season but was upset in the semifinals of SWJCFC playoffs. The Buccaneers, finished 10th in the final NJCAA national poll, closed out their season with a 46-17 loss Mississippi Gulf Coast CC in the Mississippi Bowl.
Blinn had five named to the NJCAA All-American Team and 24 players move on to four-year programs.
Rankings: NJCAA: 5th: JCGridiron: 5th
Ronny Feldman, head coach: Feldman is heading into his second as the Buccaneers head coach. He also currently serves as the team’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks/receivers coach.
Feldman has 35 years of coaching experience at the collegiate and high school levels.
Players to watch
K/P/WR Kurt Walker: The six-foot-one sophomore was a first team All-Conference selection as a kicker in 2011. Walker made 67-of-his 68 PATs and eight of his nine field goal attempts. He also punted four times for a 34.25 average.
Walker saw limited action as a wide receiver last season. He caught four passes for 134 yards.
DB Tevin Broussard: The six-foot-one, 200-pound sophomore is expected to be one of the best JUCO defensive backs in 2012. Broussard was a second team All-Conference selection last season. He made 46 tackles, intercepted a pass and recovered a fumble in 2011.
Broussard has several scholarship offers in hand. Broussard has an offer from UT-San Antonio as well as offers from several Big 12 and Conference USA schools.
OLB Brandon Thornton: The six-foot-three sophomore was a second team All-SWJCFC selection in 2011. Thornton compiled 76 tackles and 2 sacks.
OL Kyle Bottoms: The six-foot-five, 300-pound sophomore is expected to be one of the best offensive linemen in the NJCAA in 2012. Bottoms transferred from Arkansas Tech.
OL Arthur Fatu: The six-foot-one, 320-pounder should be one of the best JUCO offensive linemen in 2012. Fatu transferred from Arkansas Tech.
RB EJ Fatu: The five-foot-10, 240-pound freshman is a strong and powerful runner. Fatu ran for 121 yards on 30 carries for Klein Oak HS (Tex.) in 2011. As a junior, Fatu topped the 1,000 yard plateau.
Prior to enrolling at Blinn, Fatu garnered several scholarship offers from FBS schools. He received offers from Arizona St., Arkansas, Michigan, Nevada, Syracuse and Utah.
ILB Darzil Washington: The six-foot-three, 235-pound redshirt freshman is expected to anchor the Buccaneers’ front seven in 2012. Washington, had a stellar prep career, transferred from Texas A&M.
LB Lance Duran: The five-foot-11, 225-pound freshman had a magnificent high school career at Westlake HS in Austin, Tex. Duran, the 2011 Defensive MVP of the THSCA All-Star game, ended his prep career as the all-time leading tackler at Westlake.
Duran played for Team USA’s 19-U national team in 2012.
DL Brayven Hager: The six-foot-four, 255-pound freshman is expected to make an immediate impact in 2012. Hager, son of former NFL LB Britt Hager, was Duran’s teammate at Westlake.
QB Jeremy Johnson: The six-foot-two, 175-pound sophomore transferred from Lamar University. Johnson, played eight games for the Cardinals in 2011, was second on the team in rushing yards with 217. He also completed 16 of his 36 passes for 225 yards and three touchdowns.
Johnson is at his third school in three years and is eligible to play just one season with the Buccaneers. He also has attended West Virginia University where he redshirted his freshman year.
Daniel Benjamin has covered junior college football for a year.