By Owen Gotimer
Sterling (March 4, 2016) — Dominion High School senior Brandon Ruffin has made a commitment to continue his football career at Fairmont State University starting in the 2016-2017 school year.
“Throughout the whole recruiting process, I always pictured myself wearing various jerseys,” the 5-foot-11, 185-pound Ruffin said. “Now, to know exactly what jersey I will be wearing, it feels like I have a home.
The reason Ruffin chose to don the Fairmont State maroon and white was because of the instant influence he felt he could make on the team.
“I chose Fairmont State because of the impact I could make as a freshman and the opportunity to play on a pretty big stage,” Ruffin said.
Fairmont State’s big stage is in the form of Duvall-Rosier Field located in northeast West Virginia which is home to the Division II Falcon’s football, softball and women’s soccer teams.
In 2015, the Falcons’ football program finished 6-4 with the help of Loudoun County graduate Tae Crews-Naylor (2015), Broad Run graduate Shane Faett (2015), Tuscarora graduate Nicholas Giuliano (2015) and Stone Bridge graduate Sean Tracy (2014). The 2016 team should include those four returnees along with the addition of Ruffin and Briar Woods senior Josh Thomas.
“I think I will add speed and coverage skills as well as huge plays on special teams,” said Ruffin who will play defensive back and return punts and kickoffs for Fairmont State.
An experienced defensive back and return specialist, Ruffin played his senior season with one of the most successful Titan teams in Dominion High School history. Along with James Madison-commit Adeeb Atariwa, UVA Wise-commit James Burless, Shenandoah-commit Chris Hanna, UVA Wise-commit Jordan Hinson, Gannon-commit Derrick Kouame, McDaniel-commit Luke Thompson and Bryant-commit Taliek Washington, Ruffin led the Titans to a 6-4 finish in 2015 missing a VHSL 4A West region playoff berth by less than half a power point.
“Playing for Dominion will be something I will never forget,” Ruffin said. “Coach Buck is not only a great coach, he is a great human being, and he really does care about every player and his actions prove it. Playing for Buck has taught me that if you focus and work hard the results will come.”
Raised in Alexandria, Ruffin noted that his dad got him started in sports at a young age and his committing to Fairmont State will help him repay the sacrifices his parents have made for him throughout his athletic career.
“As I transitioned into high school, I saw how much I could repay my parents for everything they’ve sacrificed for me,” Ruffin said. “That’s my motivation: to repay my parents.”