Owning a business can be a challenge, but when you add being a full-time college student and Wittenberg football player, it seems almost impossible, except if you’re Jeff Tiffner.
“It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to do this,” Tiffner said.
Tiffner, at 5-foot-9, is a 24-year-old sophomore and a Sports Management major. Others on campus notice his big-time energy when he walks into the room because he always brings his smile and openness to the classroom.
“There is never a dull moment when you’re sitting in that chair and I see the same kind of attitude and spark on the field,” said Zack Jenkins, a former teammate of and currently a coach on the Wittenberg Tigers football team.
Tiffner graduated in 2011 from Kenton Ridge High School in Springfield and instead of going the typical college route, chose to go to barber school in Columbus, Ohio. Once Tiffner was certified in 2012 as a licensed barber, he opened up a partnered shop near the Wittenberg baseball field with the help of a local friend and barber.
Being self-employed has motivated Tiffner to choose this career. Also, being a “people’s person” while growing up and through high school allowed him to feel comfortable with the culture that comes with the barber industry.
“Nice Cuts has been a going on four years strong and is growing with customers every year,” Tiffner said.
But something had been missing from Tiffner’s life, as he constantly stays in tune with the local high school and collegiate sports that are in and surround the Springfield area. What was missing? Football.
The once highly recruited athlete was contacted by coach Joe Fincham of the Wittenberg Tigers to see if Tiffner was interested in playing college football.
Tiffner was quickly welcomed to the team and put on the fast track — getting involved in practices, weightlifting, film and also being a full-time student.
He has not only faced these challenges, but also conquered them by improving his business clientele from the positive feedback that spread throughout campus after his teammates named him “The Official Barber of Wittenberg Football Team.”
Luke Landis, senior and teammate, has been getting his hair cut by Tiffner for the past couple of years.
“It’s the only place I trust to get a quality haircut and I have to support the team’s official barber,” Landis said.
“He makes you feel right at home when you are in his chair. He talks with you about anything, mainly sports, and he just makes you feel like a new man, especially when he trims my beard. He is the best barber around. Hands down,” Kennedy Cook, senior and teammate, said.
Tiffner is happy that he’s able to combine his love for sports with his profession.
“I wouldn’t change a thing,” he said. “The tradition and being a part of a family is what being a Tiger is all about.”