PLP Helps Evolve Football's Message
Two New York Times stories during the past week captured football's ongoing struggle with health-and-safety issues.
The first, headlined The Ivy League Becomes the Future of Football (click here), was acclamation for the many innovations of Dartmouth Coach Buddy Teevens, a founding partner of Practice Like Pros and frequent co-presenter at PLP clinics. The second, headlined Amid Concern Over Concussions, High Schools Struggle to Fill Football Rosters (click here), is the story of declining participation in New Jersey high school football.
The irony is that New Jersey is on the verge of having the nation's best story to tell. Following an October 17 presentation by PLP, the Sports Medical Advisory Committee of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) unanimously endorsed the most restrictive practice contact limits in the history of high school football. All that remains is approval from the NJSIAA Executive Committee,which next meets November 14. The impact of these contact reductions, if enacted, will be studied by scientific researchers from one of New Jersey's medical schools.
"This is the way the process should work," said PLP founder Terry O'Neil. "New Jersey coaches collaborated with us on a proposal. The governing body received it enthusiastically. The benefits of their contact reductions will be confirmed by scientific research. Next time New Jersey coaches and athletic directors take a call from a reporter, they'll have a different message. And when a few states follow New Jersey's lead, we'll have a template for the entire country."
In the next five weeks, PLP will visit three other states to offer similar proposals.