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Football and CTE


dfwabel
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15 minutes ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

The overwhelming majority of baseball and basketball players would quit if the nature of their sports required that level of training. LeBron James would struggle to survive an NFL training camp.  

 

Instead he'll be a billionaire and live to see his kids grow up. What a chump.

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On 8/12/2018 at 9:44 PM, Mac the Knife said:

 

Woah, woah, woah... hold up a minute.  Let's back up a minute here.

 

 

Have you ever actually listened to a collegiate or professional football player, current or former, give an interview?  Because if you have, you can clearly (and I mean clearly) tell which among them either (i) have received significant media relations training, (ii) have suffered significant brain trauma during the course of their careers, or (iii) neither.  The first group usually wind up as part of the jockocracy or otherwise want to be in the broadcasting field once they're playing days are over (and kudos to them if they can get such gigs).  The third group you don't hear much about because they spend their post-playing days doing things like managing beer distributorships, selling insurance or opening up car dealerships - none of which are that hard to excel at if you have a little bit of drive and initiative; but c'mon, there aren't any guys who've played in the NFL currently working at Sloan-Kettering.

 

The middle group?  That's the wider swath of professional players if they've played long enough.  When you interview them they sound like Evander Holyfield and/or Riddick Bowe - guys whom you can easily document the progress of their brain trauma-induced dementia based solely on their ability to speak.

 

In short, you're trying to paint with a very, very wide brush in an effort to put a coat over the flaws in the fine strokes here.

 

 

As I've said before, I don't have a magic wand-like answer to what would make football safer as a sport, nor will I ever claim to.  I don't think the 'safety hurdle' can be managed, in large part because we're not at all sure just how high that hurdle is yet.  And evidently, you've no issue with risking the safety of children until the height of that hurdle can be clearly defined.  I'm sorry, but I don't fall into that camp.

 

I also notice that you've conveniently neglected to rebut my mention of Bjorn Nittmo.  His story is, at absolute minimum, exceptionally strong circumstantial evidence that the game shouldn't be regulated - but outlawed, period - as he took ONE shot to the head in a game 30 years ago, and has been completely messed up since.  Any such sport that puts you at such risk (and I'll include auto racing in this) should be considered for elimination.  At minimum, others outside the parameters of the game's "family" need to step in, do a thorough and objective assessment of it, and determine how the game can be made safer - just as Theodore Roosevelt did 110 or so years ago.  If that means the end of the kickoff?  I'm fine by that.  If that means players playing without pads and helmets so they realize how vulnerable they are rather than feeling invincible?  I'm for that.  But someone needs to step in, and to argue otherwise is folly.

Yes, I've listened to hundreds of interviews of former players, and my experience has shown the vast majority were authentic. And I've also spoken to countless former players myself, and the success stories cannot be overlooked. From doctors, lawyers, business owners, and coaches, many of these former players are excelling mentally. That has yet to be explained by the anti-football crowd, and it won't. We still don't know what level of CTE begins to adversely affect a person.

 

As for the older guys having problems, that's sad, but many of them played before we had anywhere close to the amount of knowledge about this issue we have today. And it's also worth noting, the players who were smarter about reporting head and other injuries many years ago, were likely better off later. And lest we forget, because this always seems to be left out, playing college football is a decision made by players who are virtually all old enough to make the decision to join the military.

 

I'm definitely not painting a wide brush, but after more than four decades of experience with the sport across the country, I have the gravitas to speak about this topic. When I read these poorly-researched stories by folks just out of college, it's depressing, because there are parents who read this stuff as fact and are preventing their sons from playing a sport which will likely enrich their lives.

 

Oh, the safety hurdle will be managed, I can assure you of that. Football has been a part of our sports fabric for too long, and the answers are too obvious. The wrong path is to erode the sport's foundation with idiotic rules changes. The right path is technology, medical advancements, coaches pulling players earlier, and on the NFL level, players actually getting involved in their own safety.

 

Bjorn Nittmo is a sad story. But so is baseball's Ray Chapman, and the minor league coach killed by a line drive. And numbers of basketball players have dropped dead of heart problems over the years. Football is an inherently violent sport, and we have to come to terms about that. When Ryan Shazier was seriously hurt last year in that Cincinnati game, I was saddened, but also noticed the wrong tackling technique which caused the injury. But by the start of the second half, like many fans, I was able to compartmentalize the situation, and enjoy a physical two quarters of football. Where we are today is nothing like Theodore Roosevelt's era, where plenty of players died or were paralyzed on the gridiron.   

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2 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

The overwhelming majority of baseball and basketball players would quit if the nature of their sports required that level of training. LeBron James would struggle to survive an NFL training camp. 

Korey Stringer failed to survive one himself.

But out of that, we all tree. Yeah tree!

https://thevikingage.com/2018/08/15/memorial-treemankato-vikings-korey-stringer/
 

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2 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

The overwhelming majority of baseball and basketball players would quit if the nature of their sports required that level of training. LeBron James would struggle to survive an NFL training camp. 

 

Bo Jackson is laughing at this assertion. ?

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3 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

It's a piece of cake to discover many of the anti-football writers are 20 somethings with a limited knowledge about this topic. Their stories just don't overreach, but the links to their twitter pages reveal a tiny understanding about the world. Thank goodness I didn't attend some of these colleges! LOL!

 

Ah, a bunch of fruitcakes who don't get what it means to be a tough man who are out of touch with my outdated worldview! Going into your posting history provides a bit of a revelation:

 

On 6/8/2018 at 5:42 PM, Gold Pinstripes said:

Sad news, but after catching his CNN show a number of times, I'm not all that surprised. You could tell he enjoyed talking about food, but the show had plenty of propaganda and identity politics. It's been my experience those type of people are unhappy at a core level, and no amount of money and fame will stop the suffering.    

 

Ah, a guy who supported non-white groups, women's rights, and similar causes was a propagandist who clearly had depression? That's kind of a low blow to strike, and speaks to your worldview of "family values," "manliness," and "not changing for the sake of a few special little snowflakes." Just be transparent about it, OK?

 

You see my username, and you probably had to resist the urge to call me a term I don't feel comfortable using (rhymes with "maggot"). 

 

Mods, if I went to far, please edit this post.

Edited by SFGiants58
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2 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

And lest we forget, because this always seems to be left out, playing college football is a decision made by players who are virtually all old enough to make the decision to join the military.

Kind of the whole point of this topic is that we're in an era where the understanding of the risks of playing football is evolving. There's now a "known unknown" out there regarding football and the brain. It's hard to make an informed decision when all of the required information isn't available yet, and many people deny there is a problem at all.

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6 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

Yes, I've listened to hundreds of interviews of former players, and my experience has shown the vast majority were authentic. And I've also spoken to countless former players myself, and the success stories cannot be overlooked. From doctors, lawyers, business owners, and coaches, many of these former players are excelling mentally. That has yet to be explained by the anti-football crowd, and it won't. We still don't know what level of CTE begins to adversely affect a person.

 

As for the older guys having problems, that's sad, but many of them played before we had anywhere close to the amount of knowledge about this issue we have today. And it's also worth noting, the players who were smarter about reporting head and other injuries many years ago, were likely better off later. And lest we forget, because this always seems to be left out, playing college football is a decision made by players who are virtually all old enough to make the decision to join the military.

 

I'm definitely not painting a wide brush, but after more than four decades of experience with the sport across the country, I have the gravitas to speak about this topic. When I read these poorly-researched stories by folks just out of college, it's depressing, because there are parents who read this stuff as fact and are preventing their sons from playing a sport which will likely enrich their lives.

 

Oh, the safety hurdle will be managed, I can assure you of that. Football has been a part of our sports fabric for too long, and the answers are too obvious. The wrong path is to erode the sport's foundation with idiotic rules changes. The right path is technology, medical advancements, coaches pulling players earlier, and on the NFL level, players actually getting involved in their own safety.

 

Bjorn Nittmo is a sad story. But so is baseball's Ray Chapman, and the minor league coach killed by a line drive. And numbers of basketball players have dropped dead of heart problems over the years. Football is an inherently violent sport, and we have to come to terms about that. When Ryan Shazier was seriously hurt last year in that Cincinnati game, I was saddened, but also noticed the wrong tackling technique which caused the injury. But by the start of the second half, like many fans, I was able to compartmentalize the situation, and enjoy a physical two quarters of football. Where we are today is nothing like Theodore Roosevelt's era, where plenty of players died or were paralyzed on the gridiron.   

Bolded #1:While that is true, the military doesn't ask their parents to sign a NLI for their 16 or 17 year old child over to them.

 

Bolded #2: Coaches priority at all levels is to win and especially if it's their career, they will place their own interest over that of the player. 

Bolded #3: We got it, repeatedly.

 

Your football entertainment and blood lust > Any collateral damage caused by the sport.

 

You are emotionally tone deaf to those who play sport and what pleases you is forever the priority. CTE attained by the players, physical harm inflicted to/by them or others due to the damage football (or sport) isn't your problem.

 

Are your heroes Woody Hayes, Frank Kush, Bob Knight and Mike Leach? Is your favorite team ever that '54 Texas A&M team, The Junction Boys?

 

EDIT (And rejudge your Likes accordingly):

Do I hate football? No.

Am I addicted to it? Yes, as Mike Gundy would say... "I'm a man, I'm 40!"

 

 

The sport is not the panacea to the ills of the current US culture as you write here. It's very toxic at every level.

"Friday Night Tykes" shows how abusive youth football is nationally.

 

"Friday Night Lights" illustrated the toxicity which HS football caused in 1980's Odessa, TX.

 

No need to give examples of the toxicity at the levels above the prep level.

Edited by dfwabel
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12 minutes ago, Cosmic said:

Kind of the whole point of this topic is that we're in an era where the understanding of the risks of playing football is evolving. There's now a "known unknown" out there regarding football and the brain. It's hard to make an informed decision when all of the required information isn't available yet, and many people deny there is a problem at all.

 

And worse yet, when those with a financial interest deliberately impedes study of the problem.  As the NFL has done.  They have misdirected, pulled away promised funding, and taken over studies that should be impartial.

 

So long as the league continues to obstruct the investigation, there will be no such thing as “informed consent”. 

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7 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

The overwhelming majority of baseball and basketball players would quit if the nature of their sports required that level of training. LeBron James would struggle to survive an NFL training camp. 

 

Yeah, um, no.

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7 hours ago, Gold Pinstripes said:

Yep, and he had the freedom to do what he wanted. For James, it could have easily turned out differently if he shredded a knee in his rookie year.

 

Don't you like, have, a zillion times greater chance of shredding your knee if you play football instead of basketball?

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14 hours ago, Cosmic said:

Kind of the whole point of this topic is that we're in an era where the understanding of the risks of playing football is evolving. There's now a "known unknown" out there regarding football and the brain. It's hard to make an informed decision when all of the required information isn't available yet, and many people deny there is a problem at all.

Nobody is denying there aren't risks, but it's the assumptions without the facts which are troubling. And it is a problem which can be reduced, this isn't a binary situation. Much research has to be done.

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15 hours ago, SFGiants58 said:

 

Ah, a bunch of fruitcakes who don't get what it means to be a tough man who are out of touch with my outdated worldview! Going into your posting history provides a bit of a revelation:

 

 

Ah, a guy who supported non-white groups, women's rights, and similar causes was a propagandist who clearly had depression? That's kind of a low blow to strike, and speaks to your worldview of "family values," "manliness," and "not changing for the sake of a few special little snowflakes." Just be transparent about it, OK?

 

You see my username, and you probably had to resist the urge to call me a term I don't feel comfortable using (rhymes with "maggot"). 

 

Mods, if I went to far, please edit this post.

My worldview is quite informed, and some in your state are the ones getting left behind. And by the way, I support people of all colors, and believe in equal rights for all. If you're a young writer with a limited knowledge of a topic, it's only fair to do the research before making assertions.

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