Former LSU Football Player turned business owner
PONCHATOULA- When Jonathan Rucker walked on to play football at LSU in 2013, he had thoughts of carving his path on the gridiron, but after four years of struggles, the GPS called life, mapped out a route that brought him back home to Ponchatoula.
When talking about the move to this new arena, Jonathan this:
"God gave me the ability to play at LSU and do what I did there and I was thankful for that, but He also gave me another ability, which is to be business-minded."
From the playbook to the planner, Rucker knew he had to hang up the cleats, but use what he learned in the locker room to help him in the business world.
"One thing that Coach O was big about, is one team one heartbeat. When I had my meeting with some of my potential hires, that's what I was trying to explain to them. This is going to be one team, one heartbeat." He continued, "We're going to be facing a lot of different challenges, and there's going to by a lot of different moving parts, so as long as we're relying on each other to do our jobs, it's going to move smoothly."
Smooth is the keyword here, he's now opening a jazz joint called 'JRucker's House of Soul'.
That classic, old school melody has been the soundtrack of his life, and now he wants to play the hits back home.
"You can leave, and come back home and invest in your community and that's what I'm big on." Rucker continued, "You can go off and build up other communities, which is a great thing to do, but being able to come back home and do it right here where you grew up, in the exact same neighborhood you grew up in is a wonderful thing."
Rucker sees his restaurant as more than just his dream. He's hoping it is a way to uplift his community, just down the street from the house he lived in most of his life.
"My thing is what if. what if I make it. how many people will I inspire then? so when the next 23 or 24-year-old goes to start a business they can look to me and say well if he did it, I can do the same thing," Rucker said.