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Football Coaches Working To Lessen Concussion Risks

Football Coaches Working To Lessen Concussion Risks Click to Enlarge Photo: Matt Demczyk (KNSI)

Aug 10, 2017 at 1:11 pm

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (KNSI) - Scientific studies have shown a link between football players with concussions leading to possible lasting side effects, so what is being done at the high school level to protect athletes?

St. Cloud Tech Football Head Coach Greg Martig says equipment has come a long way, but the most significant change has been how coaches run their practices.

"You just don't run football practices quite honestly the way they did when I grew up, you just don't do those things anymore," Martig said.

The days of one-on-one tackling drills, like the Oklahoma Drill, where a ball carrier and a defender meet head-on, are over and have been for quite sometime Martig says.

"We do very little full-contact, really if any at all at any point during the season in a practice scenario," he said.

Martig did say that the amount of football players in his program has decreased in the last five years, but rules and procedures implemented by coaches and the Minnesota State High School League has helped ease parents minds.

"The coaches and the state high school league are doing everything they can to make everything as safe as they possibly can for the kids," parent Brett Hanson said.

A new rule this season for MSHSL football, a referee can take a player out of the game if the referee thinks the player is showing concussion symptoms that a coach on the sideline might not have seen.

Hanson played high school football as a kid, and says he's not worried about his son sustaining lasting effects from concussions.

Hanson can't wait to watch his son play under the Friday night lights.

That's what it's all about, that's what I've been waiting for all these years, I loved it and I think he loves it as much as I do," he said.

The Tech Tigers open up their season against crosstown rival Apollo on Friday, September 1.

That game can be heard on KNSI, with coverage starting at 6:45 p.m.

 

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