This article about Chris Gedney deserves its own thread ...

cto

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... and not be buried at the end of an old one.

I have some arguments with it -- mainly the way it focuses on his first wife and pretty much ignores Seely, his second wife who brought him so much happiness until his pain got too much to bear. On balance, however, it is a story about the dark side of big-time sports ... the side most people never see.

 
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Moontan

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Wow! Very moving. Very sad.

I got to meet Chris a few times (football game at Wake and 2013 Final Four come to mind). Never knew about this and never expected things to end the way they did.

Could be Nate’s best piece ever.

[I tried to post this to the previous thread only to find out out that it had just been locked.]
 
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elimunelson

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... and not be buried at the end of an old one.

I have some arguments with it -- mainly the way it focuses on his first wife and pretty much ignores Seely, the second wife who brought him so much happiness until his pain got too much to bear. On balance, however, it is a story about the dark side of big-time sports ... the side most people never see.

I got the impression that she didn't want to participate in the article as much as the first wife did. That is a fantastic story.

The facility for former players seems like a good idea that died? No comment from Wildhack. Any idea what happened to that.
 

SWC75

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And this interview with Dr. Bennet Omalu deserves a listen:

People need to be able to make their own decisions but they need to be fully informed decisions. There's no place for apathy or secrecy.

If we get rid of all contact football before age 18, that would be a sea change.
 

Scooch

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Enlightening piece, and a terribly sad story.

I suspect SU, institutionally, is wired better than many schools to help former players navigate the physical and mental toll the game takes. If that occurs then perhaps there's some good that can come from the Gedney tragedy.
 

reedny

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Not only its own thread ... but a variety of social, legal and institutional changes. I've been a college football fan for decades. Not only would I still watch if they made the game safer, I'd feel better that I "sacrificed" my entertainment to minimize post-FB nightmares like Chris Gedney's.
 
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SUFaninNJ

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Very moving article. I don’t blame Nate for focusing on Chris’s first wife, as his second wife chose not to be interviewed for the article. The accompanying video interview with Scott Schwedes hit me just as hard. I went to high school with Scott and graduated with his wife Jodi. It really was well done and I’m sure very difficult for Scott to do. The article and interview were both heartbreaking.
 

MSOrange

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Not only its own thread ... but a variety of social, legal and institutional changes. I've been a college football fan for decades. But I'd still watch if they made the game safer, and feel great that I "sacrificed" my entertainment to minimize endings like Chris Gedney's.
I feel the same way. There are some hits and injuries that I see and wonder why the heck I still watch this game.
 

SU68

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I still maintain that football would be much better if they banned helmets and shoulder pads. There would still be hits and the potential for injury, but not as much as now.
 

OrangePA

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Devastating
That is the emotion I felt after reading the piece.

It is devastating, yet there really are no words to explain how I feel.

I love the game of football - I love watching the Orangemen play in the Dome.

But, after reading this article, I find myself asking whether this a sport that should be played? Is the damage that it necessarily causes worth it? Perhaps it is. I hope it is.

But, it seems clear that the violence of the game needs to be addressed. Not with better equipment - that is a band-aid in my opinion.

Substantive changes to the game must be made.

Eliminate artificial grass - require natural grass that slows the game down. Place weight limits on players. Allow offensive lines to hold. Allow DBs to bump and run - to slow the game down. Take real action to eliminate steroid/human growth hormones - make the players smaller and slower.

For me, it comes down to this - the speed of the game is too fast - the collisions are too violent.

Something has to be done.
 

Bayside44

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That is the emotion I felt after reading the piece.

It is devastating, yet there really are no words to explain how I feel.

I love the game of football - I love watching the Orangemen play in the Dome.

But, after reading this article, I find myself asking whether this a sport that should be played? Is the damage that it necessarily causes worth it? Perhaps it is. I hope it is.

But, it seems clear that the violence of the game needs to be addressed. Not with better equipment - that is a band-aid in my opinion.

Substantive changes to the game must be made.

Eliminate artificial grass - require natural grass that slows the game down. Place weight limits on players. Allow offensive lines to hold. Allow DBs to bump and run - to slow the game down. Take real action to eliminate steroid/human growth hormones - make the players smaller and slower.

For me, it comes down to this - the speed of the game is too fast - the collisions are too violent.

Something has to be done.

Chris's injuries happened in a different time, practices were longer, more violent, etc. A lot of changes to rules and norms have taken place since. But yeah, share the sentiment...
 

Newhouser

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so will be there follow up on the non-meeting between the school and former players? Has anything been done?
 

Scooch

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Chris's injuries happened in a different time, practices were longer, more violent, etc. A lot of changes to rules and norms have taken place since. But yeah, share the sentiment...
Agree, most of the horrible impact we’re seeing amongst guys in their 40s and 50s occurred when players were smaller and slower. Your point about practices is important, I suspect a ton of damage happened durint the endless hitting during Monday through Friday practice sessions. It’s just that the hits on Saturday and Sunday were more visible.

Sadly I don’t think there’s any way to make football “safe”. It’s a bloodsport. Best we can do is limit the damage as much as can be, and take guys out of action the second injuries happen. It’s still a mess though. Good athletes should really play baseball and basketball.
 

orange79

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Tough article to get through. I had tears for Seely and the family. RIP, Chris.
 

elimunelson

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Agree, most of the horrible impact we’re seeing amongst guys in their 40s and 50s occurred when players were smaller and slower. Your point about practices is important, I suspect a ton of damage happened durint the endless hitting during Monday through Friday practice sessions. It’s just that the hits on Saturday and Sunday were more visible.

Sadly I don’t think there’s any way to make football “safe”. It’s a bloodsport. Best we can do is limit the damage as much as can be, and take guys out of action the second injuries happen. It’s still a mess though. Good athletes should really play baseball and basketball.
Need to figure out any way to mitigate long term injuries because the game is not going away it’s only getting more popular. I agree w PA that weight limits, grass and bump and run techniques allow for less violence in the collisions but the public still wants the car crash hits. The game is too good not to be fixed.

I hope SU takes the lead in helping former players on campus w a halfway house of sorts to allow players to work out issues on campus.
 

cto

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Need to figure out any way to mitigate long term injuries because the game is not going away it’s only getting more popular. I agree w PA that weight limits, grass and bump and run techniques allow for less violence in the collisions but the public still wants the car crash hits. The game is too good not to be fixed.

I hope SU takes the lead in helping former players on campus w a halfway house of sorts to allow players to work out issues on campus.
I do NOT think it is getting more popular. Most of my friends will not allow their sons to play football.
 

sutomcat

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... and not be buried at the end of an old one.

I have some arguments with it -- mainly the way it focuses on his first wife and pretty much ignores Seely, his second wife who brought him so much happiness until his pain got too much to bear. On balance, however, it is a story about the dark side of big-time sports ... the side most people never see.

I have nothing of worth to add. Chris was a really good guy. He was very supportive and helpful to Dan, who suffered from the same disease. In retrospect, it is amazing he lasted as long as he did given all the things he was dealing with.

You would never know it talking to him though.

So sad for his family, friends and children. I hope something good can come of this and this helps put in place some kind of support group for former SU athletes dealing with major problems after their college careers are over with.
 

Bayside44

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I do NOT think it is getting more popular. Most of my friends will not allow their sons to play football.

Most of your friends - and mine - aren't breeding kids that can play high d-1 or NFL football. That level of youth and high school football in a lot of places is going away. Our local club's football pretty much went poof while lax and soccer has multiple teams per age group. Exceptional football talents are probably mostly still there and playing.
 

Scooch

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Youth tackle football participation rates have declined fairly substantially over the past decade.


Although to be fair, it's not like tackle football was ever one of the most played youth sports. Basketball, baseball and soccer have been the leaders for a long time going (soccer participation is declining though, contrary to conventional wisdom, and likely due to the rise of expensive club programs).

Interestingly, there are more kids playing flag football than tackle now, which is a relatively new development.

But to Bayside's point, there are still a TON of kids who are playing tackle football and have the skill set to become premiere players with D1 college and pro aspirations. Football isn't going away in any of our lifetimes.
 

kirbivore

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Football will hang on like boxing, eventually only the most economically desperate will participate.
 

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