For the love of the game

Published on: January 30, 2019

Longhorn volunteer hoops coach

Ruffin has three passions: Family, business, basketball

By STEPHEN FLANAGAN JACKSON

Courtney Ruffin, assistant coach for Lennard High School boys varsity basketball.
STEVE JACKSON PHOTO

For love of the game. But more for love of the kids.
Why else would anyone volunteer to give of themselves, their time and their energy?
That’s what Courtney Ruffin, assistant coach for Lennard High School boys varsity basketball, is all about.
Ruffin has three passions: Family, business and basketball. Of the three, it is his insurance business which puts bread on the table for his wife and five children, ranging in age from 3 to 22. “I could not do what I do without the loving support of my wife Raichelle and our children,” said Ruffin.
Basketball is an activity that Ruffin has participated in ever since he was old enough to walk and to dribble. He grew up in Atlantic Beach, Fla., a suburb of Jacksonville. On the First Coast (a region of North Florida on the Atlantic Coast), Ruffin attended Fletcher High School in Neptune, Fla. and Florida Metropolitan University. He later worked as an assistant basketball coach at the Bolles School and at East Bay High in South Shore before joining Head Basketball Coach Zarko Stojakovic, for the 18-19 Longhorn hoops season. Stojakovic, in only his second season himself at the helm, gives a great deal of credit to Ruffin for the Longhorn’s first winning season since 2013-14 under former coach Danny Gaddis. “Coach Ruffin works well with the young men on the team and has a great knowledge of basketball,” said Stojakovic. Unlike many college and high school coaches, both Stojakovic and Ruffin are relatively calm on the bench and the sidelines during the game. They save their teaching moments for the game timeouts and for practices – in most cases – refraining from shouting at the players and the officials during the game – in most cases.
Ruffin volunteers on the court, but has transitioned fulltime to the business world recently as a salesman for Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Co., a leading provider of final expense or burial insurance.
“My satisfaction comes from being able to provide a reliable product at an affordable cost to individuals that will protect their families when the inevitable occurs,” said Ruffin. “It makes me feel good to know that my clients have a sense of relief with a burial insurance policy that fits their budget, health condition and lifestyle.
“My short-term goal is to build a solid and rewarding relationship in the South Shore community,” said Ruffin. “Long term, I work to make sure that every person from infant stage on up has the insurance protection they need to ensure that families never face the financial devastation that losing someone can cause.”
Ruffin mentioned that if anyone wants a free consultation about funeral costs and estimates, they can email him at his office at Courtney.ruffin@gmail.com or call at 904-874-3634. If you call the volunteer coach during practice time or game time, just leave a message and Ruffin will get back with you.

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