Football and Bubba

Junior Seau died yesterday.  Tragic loss of life. A loss of life that brings up many questions in my own parenting as I sit here on, potentially, the eve of the birth of my son.

Will I let my son play football growing up? I really recommend this read by Andy Staples at si.com on the head trauma problems and whether or not he’s going to let his son play football.

It just seems to dangerous right now. Way to dangerous. Concussions, brain damage, let alone all the other injuries that could come with playing football. The risk doesn’t seem worth the reward.

I’m pro team sports. Very pro team sports. Character, work ethic, teamwork, diligence, amongst a list of other things. I love football. I played growing up. I think every guy should be able to throw a football around with his buddies. I’m pro defense. That’s what I played in Midget football (really, it’s called Midget Football back home). But, I do think that something has to happen especially with head injuries for me to let my son play.

It’s weird. Looking back on my High School career I often wished I would have played Football. Everyone made the team, and I wish I would have been a part of that. I only weighed 105 when I graduated High School so I wouldn’t have gotten a lot of playing time anyways. But the team aspect would have been great. And now, I don’t think I could allow my son to have the experience that I wish I had.

The risk is not worth the reward.

What say you?

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1 Comment

Filed under Family, manliness, Sports

One response to “Football and Bubba

  1. hoogator

    TMQ has been on this train for years. I recommend his article about concussion resistant helmets and ongoing studies at Virginia Tech. Harrowing stuff, indeed. Like Mr. Easterbrook, I also wonder how long major colleges and universities can continue to look the other way when there is the potential that their “student-athletes” are doing lasting damage to their bodies and minds.

    I’ve thought about the concussion issue, and I think we’re somewhat deluding ourselves in the name of entertainment. Of course football is dangerous; almost ludicrously so. How could there not be lasting damage from repeatedly hurling your gigantic body into other equally massive men? But as long as they keep doing it, I’ll keep watching it. As the sport’s profile increases, the visibility of each player death is increasing proportionally. Junior Seau is not the first, and he will most definitely not be the last. It happened to boxing; look at Ali. Soon enough, it will probably happen to football that we won’t be amused anymore.

    As to whether I would let my son play? No. That was a hard decision to come to. There are other sports. I think about the times I had with my friends on the Cross Country team; we were truly a team even if we didn’t compete as a unit. We shared the same suffering of mile after mile of hard, hot pavements in August and September. Years later, I’m still running, long after the pads and cleats were hung up by my classmates.

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