Ted Kempski to Receive 2007 Outstanding Achievement Award
Longtime Delaware assistant coach Ted Kempski will be the recipient of the American Football Coaches Association’s Outstanding Achievement Award. The award will be presented to Kempski during the AFCA Kickoff Luncheon on January 7 at the 2008 AFCA Convention in Anaheim, California. The AFCA Board of Trustees created the award in order to recognize AFCA members, past and present, who have achieved outstanding success while coaching in football.
“When I received word from Grant Teaff that I was selected as this year’s Outstanding Achievement Award winner, I was thrilled and overwhelmed because of the enormity of this award,” Kempski said. “After I had a chance to sit back and think about it, this is the greatest honor that I have received. This award is a compliment to the great players and coaches that I was associated with over the years. I am grateful to the University of Delaware for allowing me to work at such a great institution.”
Kempski, who helped the University of Delaware football team to national prominence in 34 seasons as an assistant coach under Tubby Raymond, begins his sixth year as Special Assistant to the Director of Athletics under Edgar Johnson. In this new position, he assists with various areas of the Blue Hen athletic program including special projects, game day and facility operations, and sports camps.
Kempski began his association with Delaware as the starting quarterback for the Blue Hens in 1961 and 1962, helping lead Delaware to a the Middle Atlantic Conference championship in 1962. Kempski also completed a master’s degree from Delaware in 1965 while serving as a graduate assistant for the football team under College Football Hall of Fame head coach, David Nelson.
Kempski worked as an assistant coach at George Washington and Marshall before returning to his alma mater to be the offensive coordinator in 1968. He completed 34 seasons on the coaching staff, retiring as associate head coach after the 2001 season. During his time on the Blue Hen sidelines, Delaware won three national titles, made 16 NCAA tournament appearances, won 14 Lambert Cup (Eastern Champions) trophies and nine ECAC Team of the Year awards while also capturing eight conference titles.
Kempski coached three All-Americans in the Delaware backfield, fullbacks Chuck Hall and Daryl Brown, and halfback Gardy Kahoa. Brown became the leading rusher at Delaware and in the Atlantic 10 Conference during his final season in 1994. From 1968 to 1973, Kempski’s backfields led the College Division in either rushing or total offense per game, and his 1979 backfield led the nation in scoring and total offense. During his 34 years as coach, Kempski’s offenses were consistently ranked among the nation’s best. Kempski was also a member of the American Football Coaches Association Assistant Coaches Committee from 1981 to 1986.
Former Delaware and College Football Hall of Fame head coach Tubby Raymond said this about Kempski: “Ted was our offensive coordinator at Delaware for 34 years, and during that time, we were eminently successful and on the cutting edge of offensive football. Much of our success was a result of Ted’s imagination and teaching ability as we adjusted to defensive trends and the increasing ability of our players. It is my opinion that Ted Kempski was the quintessential assistant football coach having helped Delaware achieve national recognition in addition to his special contribution of helping other coaches throughout the country.”
Kempski is a native of Wilmington, Delaware and a graduate of Salesianum High School where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball. In 1983, Kempski was named recipient of Salesianum’s “Golden Helmet Award.” He now resides in Elkton, Maryland, with his wife Cathy. They have a son Dan, and two daughters, Peggy and Janeen, four granddaughters, Courtney, Katie, Kelley, and Maggie, and two grandsons, John and Zachary.
The AFCA was founded in 1922 and currently has more than 10,000 members around the world ranging from the high school level to the professional ranks. According to its constitution, the AFCA was formed, in part, to “maintain the highest possible standards in football and in the coaching profession” and to “provide a forum for the discussion and study of all matters pertaining to football.”