The Ball Street Journal

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The Ball Street Journal

The Ball Street Journal

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May 15, 2024

“The 12th Blade” Forged


Ball HS graduate 2023 & Galveston College 2023 Texas A&M, BS Major Statistics & Minor English (Technical Writing)

Kodiak Cox, a 2019 Ball alumnus, experienced recent success with the Texas A&M competition blade-smithing team. Already possessing a Civil Engineering degree, Cox will graduate in May with a bachelor’s degree in Material Sciences Engineering. He plans on attending graduate school at Texas A&M for a Master of Science in Material Sciences Engineering.

“A Material Science professor recommended I apply for the College/University Competition because I love the applied sciences and was excited to learn black smithing for free.” Cox said.

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While at Ball High, Cox joined the Robotics team as a sophomore in World Championship team competing at Louisville, Kentucky. As a senior, Cox led his own team, 400D, to a Robotics Co-National Championships in Autonomous Competition at Council Bluffs, Iowa. These major events prepared him for heated competition such as seen in the “forge”.

The Aggie team was coached and guided by Cowboy Szymanski of Bellville, Texas, who was a former competitor on the first season of the “Forged in Fire” show. Cowboys’ wife is an alumna of Texas A&M and strongly encouraged his involvement with “The 12th Blade” team.”

The wildly popular show on the History Channel network is attributed to the overlapping and multiple genres such as the workingman (welding & mechanics), gamers (weaponry & functional-art), and military (veterans, historians & martial-arts).

“When ‘Forged in Fire’ began in 2015, I was a quick and fan remain so, watching all the seasons and episodes at least twice,” Cox said.

The Aggies were charged with the creation of a “Sikh Khanda Blade”, then it was compared and competed against 14+ other universities at Orlando, Florida in structural and functional categories. “The 12th Blade team” rose to this cutting-edge competition, and grinded their way to greatness.


The Aggies surpassed outstanding by receiving honors of 4th place or above in all categories. The structural categories tested were design, measurements, balance, hardness, and toughness. The functional categories tested were strength, stress, and effectiveness.

“The 12th Blade Team” quenched their thirst for victory following a rich Aggie tradition.

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