Posted at: 10/23/2013 5:33 PM
| Updated at: 10/23/2013 8:11 PM
By: John McLoughlin
American parents seem to be more reluctant about allowing their sons to play football, given all the recent concern about concussions suffered during games and long-term brain injury. That's according to a new poll released on Wednesday by “HBO Real Sports” and Marist College.
The findings of this poll may be just a little bit over-blown. For instance, it quotes someone from Marist College saying the future of the sport could be jeopardized. However, there's no question that there is growing concern over head injuries.
A concussion forced Doug Draude, offensive guard for UAlbany, to the sidelines for at least two weeks. His parents are concerned.
“More so my dad, he keeps telling me to be careful but it is what it is,” says Draude.
The new poll finds that one-third of Americans are less likely to allow their sons to play the game as a result.
However, when push comes to shove, 85 percent would let them "suit up".
"The NFL has brought it to light,” says UAlbany Coach Bob Ford. He believes the poll numbers may be a little overblown. However, he says everybody including the players themselves are concerned today.
“Back when I was playing the game and you were playing the game, you'd get hit in the head and someone would laugh about it and tell you that you just got as 'zinger', but not anymore,” says Ford.
“It is a dangerous game, but sometimes you have to take the risk that goes with it,” says Chizi Mba, a UAlbany freshman tackle.
“If I was a parent, I would be inclined to allow my kids to play the game,” said Matt Campion, a Stillwater student.
The poll says one-third of folks are more worried today about brain injuries.
However, more than two thirds, 69 percent, are either less worried, or about the same because they know the Coach Fords of the football world, are more vigilant.
As for Doug Draudeit's another ten days before he sees action.
“I know that it is for my health, it is for my future,” he says.
Coach Ford says there is a whole protocol for determining when someone like Draude has recovered sufficiently to see action again, a protocol that involves baseline testing well "before" the injury and then, of course, testing “post-injury”.