Committee: Those Who Would Change Playing Rules Should Think Before They Act

The NCAA’s Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports has called on the committees that set the playing rules for the various NCAA sports to evaluate the health and safety implications of every rule change before an action is taken.

The committee noted that while rule changes are typically made to ensure fairness on the playing field, or to adapt to changes in playing styles or equipment in a given sport, they can also have a health and safety impact by, for example, enhancing the risk of concussion.

It cited “a prime example” involving “a recent proposal from the Men’s and Women’s Ice Hockey Committee that would require schools to add 10-inch pegs to their rinks that goals would rest upon in order to keep them more firmly anchored in place. The committee wanted to add the pegs so that goalies can’t intentionally bump the goal off of its spot in order to stop play and negate an offensive threat. The committee’s discussion took place amid the context of competitive fairness, but there are potential health and safety implications of the goal being more difficult to move – players careening into a goal sitting on those pegs could, potentially, be at greater risk.

“So the competitive safeguards committee emerged from its meeting with a statement calling for all discussions of playing rule changes to include an evaluation of health and safety implications, even if the rule change, such as the hockey recommendation, wasn’t proposed for reasons related to health and safety. The committee asked that the NCAA Sport Science Institute and playing rules staffs develop a collaborative formal review process and report their progress at the committee’s December meeting.”

 

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McMahon: If There Were Guns in the House, I wouldn’t be Here

Former Chicago Bears quarterback Jim McMahon, who has been the subject of many a story because of the impact that concussions have had on his post-football life, told a Chicago radio station earlier this week that he understands why some of his contemporaries have taken their own life.

“I’m glad I don’t have any weapons in my house, or else I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be here,” he said.

McMahon was in town for the Sports Legacy Institute’s first annual Chicago gala, where he was being honored “for his courage to go public with his symptoms of early-onset dementia likely due to concussions he suffered in the NFL.”

The ex-quarterback provided a graphic depiction of his current state, telling the station that he has to call his girlfriend some days and tell her he was lost. He would say “I don’t know where I’m at. I don’t know how I got on this road.”

And yet he knows others are worse off.

“Some of these guys are homeless,” he said. “They don’t know who they are. They were the ones that built this brand to where it’s at.”

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Bank Gets Behind Concussion Management Clinic

Floridian Community Bank has announced  its sponsorship of the Nova Southeastern University Concussion Management Clinic, one of the largest community-based sport concussion initiatives in the state of Florida.

The clinic provides “state-of-the-art concussion management services” to the 32 public and private high schools in the Broward County Athletic Association. Services to high school students include baseline testing, education and outreach and post-injury care. These services help to advise doctors and parents the severity of a head injury, treatment needed and when the student athlete can get return to the field/court.

“We’re very happy to be working with the team at Nova Southeastern on a cause that many of us at the bank feel so strongly about,” said Bank President Lee Frankhouser. “We’ve all learned in the past few years how critically important concussion testing and treatment is, and we feel it’s a necessity to support for South Florida’s high school athletes.”

 

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