An NBC 5 investigation took a close look at just how many student athletes
have suffered concussions in North Texas, and the numbers were staggering.
Though the NFL tracks concussions in an effort to prevent them from occurring
in the future, The University Interscholastic League (UIL), the organization
that oversees extracurricular athletic activities in the Texas public
schools, does not closely track concussions at all schools, or for all sports.
NBC 5 Investigates found that the UIL’s method of tracking concussions
in high school sports is very limited: it only collects concussion data
from a sample of high school football teams throughout the state.
For example, in 2014, the UIL reported 295 football concussions from the
263 schools that were sampled, but NBC Investigates found that there were
more concussions reported by high school football players in the DFW Metroplex
than the UIL’s state sample reported.
Over the summer, NBC 5 Investigates evaluated concussion records, broken
down by sport from 41 DFW school districts, which revealed how often concussions
are actually happening in boys’ and girls’ sports.
NBC 5 Investigates found that there were over
2,500 concussions in one school year in all middle and high schools in those 41 North Texas
reported across area districts were:
- Boys’ high school soccer – 223 concussions
- Boys’ high school basketball – 145 concussions
- Girls’ high school soccer – 183 concussions
- Girls’ softball – 121 concussions
- Cheerleading – 62 concussions
When UIL’s Assistant Director Jamey Harrison was asked if he was
concerned that the state’s sample didn’t show the full picture
of the severity of the problem, he said that the UIL is worried that they
need to do more data collection. Adding that that doesn’t mean that
they’ve found a solution yet.
One student, S. Cruz was sidelined from playing soccer after she was hit
in the head twice in one week. Cruz said that afterward, she had persistent,
unrelenting headaches that were present when she went to sleep and woke
up in the morning.
K. Locker, with Texas Health Ben Hogan Sports Medicine in Fort Worth said
that it’s a “brain injury.” He said that it’s
not a bell ringer or a concussion, it’s a traumatic brain injury
– that’s why it’s serious.
Dr. Hunt Batjer, co-chair of the NFL’s head, neck and spine committed
said that he would like to help the UIL collect data from all school sports
for boys and girls, adding that collecting data from all teams could help
the league make changes that could protect the players better.
As of right now, the UIL does not collect data from all schools or all sports.
NBC 5 Investigates found that some states do collect more statewide data,
for example, in Massachusetts, all schools are required to report concussion
data for all sports to the state health department.
Plano Personal Injury Attorney
Has your son or daughter suffered a
traumatic brain injury (TBI) in a preventable accident? Contact
The Zendeh Del Law Firm to learn more about your legal rights and filing a claim for compensation!