A semester at CSM is incredibly busy for any student. Throw in a varsity sport and time quickly becomes a hot commodity. But that was not enough for senior football player Josh Ruff, who added being an active member in two local bands to the mix. The first, Ploy for Extinction, of which Ruff is the Bass player, is currently looking to be included on the popular radio station Pandora.com. The second, Hämärä, features Ruff as the lead singer and is slowly rising in popularity. But alas, this is not Music Star of the Week, it is Athlete of the Week. And this past week, it was Ruff’s stellar defensive performance that earned him recognition. A linebacker for the Orediggers, Ruff currently leads CSM in tackles (48) which is good enough for sixth overall in the RMAC. Last week, he was named the RMAC/Baden defensive player of the week for his efforts. And Saturday, when the prolific Mines offense was struggling to put points on the board, it was Ruff and the Oredigger defense that shined, holding #25 CSU-Pueblo, the second highest scoring team in the RMAC behind Mines, to 16 points ensuring a CSM victory. For his effort on the field, Ruff is this week’s Athlete of the Week.
|Steven Wooldridge / Oredigger|
[Oredigger] What brought you to Mines?
[Ruff] I had two uncles that went here. I knew I liked math and science so it seemed like a good fit.
Why do you like to play football?
My dad has had a football in my hands ever since I was little. He gave me the drive to play and now I just love the game and can’t get away from it.
What kind of mindset does the defensive team take for each game?
We want to be playmakers and to be the team that other teams use as an example. It doesn’t matter where we are, who we are playing, or what the situation is, we just play our part no matter what. We want to make a statement every down.
What do you like about playing on defense?
It’s not all about the spotlight, the touchdowns, or the scoring. Defense is all about toughness and being physical. And as a team you really have to trust each other to be successful.
What is the hardest part about being a student-athlete at CSM?
The time commitment. It is so hard, in season, finding time to study. You have to plan out everything and become as efficient as possible. I remember two years ago, we came back from a bowl game Sunday night at 4 AM, and had finals on that Monday.
What is it like being on a varsity team?
We help each other out in everything. Everyone works together and no one refuses to help. If someone is having trouble in a class, some of the older guys who have already taken the class will always come and help them out. We all help each other out.
What is your schedule like?
The middle of the week is all school and football. I spend all day at school and my time off is spent watching film. If we have a home game on the weekends, I will play in a show that night and on Sundays both of my bands practice. I don’t really sleep.
How do you keep yourself motivated?
Football keeps me motivated and refreshed. I don’t have to worry about school and the game keeps my mind active.
What classes have you enjoyed the most at Mines?
Robotics, it’s kind of a cool class. It is more involved and has more application than some other classes. It’s nice to have a class that has something other than just numbers.