Yarbrough plaques to be presented FridayFebruary 13, 2020
By COREY STOLZENBACH
JASPER — Scott Yarbrough’s latest honor is one that will be shared by the Yabrough family and all of Jasper.
This year is the 50th anniversary of Jasper tennis being coached by a Yarbrough. Though other coaches preceded Ed early on at Jasper, he coached for more than 30 years and guided players to state championships. Scott’s father, Ed, began coaching the sport at the school in 1970, and the tradition has continued to this day, with Scott taking over the boys program in 2003 and eventually the girls program as well.
The Rutepohler family is one of many the Yarbroughs have touched over the years. Curt Rutepohler’s daughter, Emma, plays for Scott. Curt told of his daughter taking tennis lessons in fifth and sixth grade, but not playing in seventh or eighth grade. Emma had Scott as her teacher in one of her classes when she was a freshman. Curt said Scott asked one of her classmates about joining tennis, and the mention of the sport she used to play caught her eye.
“’Emma, you used to play tennis, didn’t you?’” Scott asked Emma, according to Curt. “She said, ‘Yeah.’ “He said, ‘Well, why don’t you come out for the tennis team? We could use you.’”
Emma thought about it for a few days and asked her father, who recommended she do it. Then she decided to do it.
“That was probably one of the best things that happened to Emma,” Curt said.
The distinction will be commemorated with a plaque. Scott, mother Judy and the high school will all receive plaques, with the school receiving a plaque in a larger size Friday at halftime of Jasper’s basketball game with Castle. There will also be a slide presentation as part of the festivities.
“I got a nice plaque designed,” Rutepohler said. “At the top, it says, ‘50 years of building a tradition.’ It’s got the big Jasper Tennis logo on it and then it’s going to have a picture of Ed and a picture of Scott on it with two tennis rackets in the middle, and then at the bottom, it’s going to read, ‘In appreciation of the years of dedication to the school and the community.’ Then it says, ‘For 50 years, the Yarbrough family has built the Jasper tennis program into one of the most successful and respected programs in all of Indiana.’”
The plaques are from All Star Sports and the pictures on the plaques will be in color.
“It’s extremely special and it’s one of those things that’s unheard of anymore,” Jasper athletic director Brian Lewis said.
Lewis thinks Jasper Tennis being coached by a Yarbrough for the last 50 years is a tribute to both the Yarbrough family and to the community. He thought of Ed as an iconic name in Jasper. His father, Denny, and Ed coached together. Scott coached against Brian when Scott was at Southridge and Brian was a student athlete at Jasper. Now, it’s a pleasure for Brian to get to work together with Scott.
“His work ethic and dedication to Jasper athletics is unmatched,” he said.
Indiana High School Athletic Association Assistant Commissioner Chris Kaufman will also be on hand to present a fourth plaque. Kaufman said there will be a letter inside a plaque that he is giving to Scott to congratulate him and his father on 50 years of tennis at Jasper.
Kaufman could think of examples of a singular coach being at a particular place for a long time, but a family being so involved, so intertwined, is a different story.
“It’s an outstanding achievement,” Kaufman said. “We’re very proud of it.”
Kaufman has a relationship with Scott, given that he’s in charge of boys and girls tennis as assistant commissioner. He thinks it’s important the family gets recognized by the state office for “their outstanding work with the young people and the student athletes for which they’ve served for the last 50 years.”
Tip off for the game is scheduled for 8:00 p.m.
“I think it will be really neat,” Lewis said. “I think it will be a lot of people in the gym and we’ll get to experience a great celebration of Jasper Tennis over 50 years and celebrate the Yabroughs. Scott just joined his father in the (Indiana High School Tennis Coaches Association) Hall of Fame, and so that’s a part of it as well. So, I’m really just excited to let the community enjoy in the experience.”
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