RENO, Nev. — Stefphon Jefferson is known as one of the best high school running backs to ever play here in the Central Valley. He was named Tulare County Player of the Year in 2008 at El Diamante.
Twelve years later, Jefferson’s running a different route and really showing his versatility. He’s now a husband, father, coach, public speaker, youth leader and now an author. He’s getting ready to release a children’s book.
“True and long lasting change is gonna come from impacting the kids and how we impact them is by teaching them things that will help them become leaders,” explained Jefferson.
The title of the book is called The Adventures of Luxton, the World Changer. A book inspired by his son, Luxton. Jefferson believes that teaching children positivity and confidence to follow their dreams at a young age is imperative.
“Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do it,” Jefferson said. “Because that’s something that’s ingrained in you, that’s something that you’re passionate about and to have a teacher or your parent tell you that’s a dumb idea or you can’t do it, is nonsense.”
Jefferson’s gift was football. In 2008, he rushed for 2,862 yards, a Visalia single-season rushing record that still stands today.
“That was so long ago, it doesn’t even seem that long ago,” Jefferson laughed.
He wasn’t recruited until his senior year with the Miners. Cal Poly was the first team to offer. He was supposed to go there until the coaching staff left for West Point.
“So the next school that came up was Fresno [State] and that’s when they had the Pat Hill era,” Jefferson said. “They were recruiting me and I was getting letters from them and they end up signing Robbie Rouse. I didn’t want to go there and compete with a running back they just signed.”
Rouse turned out to be the all-time leading rusher in Fresno State history.
Jefferson landed at Fresno State’s rival, Nevada. As a junior, he set four single-season program records and ranked second in the nation in rushing yards per game.
“I loved it,” explained Jefferson. “It was a great experience playing there. Coach Ault was the greatest coach that I’ve ever been coached by, because he pushed me.”
Jefferson decided to forgo his senior season to pursue the NFL and things didn’t work out as planned, however, it did lead him to a different vocation… where he can still make an impact.
“From two all the way up to seven is like the most important years for children because they will stick to the values and principles that you teach them,” Jefferson said about his new book. “So if we can get those in those first few years, then those kids will be ready to go when they get past seven and beyond.”
He’s currently living in Reno and is expecting to release his book in mid-August. He’s also planning on writing another one once his kids get a little bit older.
If you’d like to stay updated on Stefphon Jefferson and his new book, you can follow him on Instagram at @kooldadstef or on Twitter at @Stef_Surv.