A few weeks ago we had ‘Woodsgate’, and in a game where USC was playing we now have ‘Scottgate’. Arizona quarterback Matt Scott took a kick to the head and was immediately witnessed and reported throwing up. Concussions are mainly a subjective injury, meaning we cannot “see” what is going on, however, there are times when a player/person exhibits signs of a traumatic head injury.
It has been my experience as an athletic trainer and one who deeply studies concussions that signs are often the best information we can get as clinicians/health care providers. I have never been around a player that has had overt signs such as: balance disturbance, slurred speech, wandering eyes or VOMITING and not had a concussion.
Oh, Scott was returned to play…
I could and have gone on about this many times (see the ‘Woodsgate’ link above or another Pac-12 team and ‘Lockergate’ a few years back), but I believe Dan Diamond did an excellent piece on this for Forbes;
Congratulations, University of Arizona. Your football team just scored a big win over USC–partly because your quarterback played through an almost-certain concussion.
To be fair, it was your biggest victory in two whole years. And the NCAA’s not going to penalize you, so why protect your player? It’s not like we’ve learned anything about football and head injuries.[...]
By keeping Scott on the field, Arizona had little to lose, other than the game; the NCAA’s concussion policy is toothless and links to some of their head-injury resources don’t even appear to be working on their website. (Try clicking on “Behind the Blue Disk: NCAA’s Approach to Concussions.”)
And despite everything we know about head injuries, the culture of complicity extends to those who cover the sport. I didn’t actually watch the game, but was told that the announcers were blasé about Scott playing through his big hit. The initial write-ups on ESPN and elsewhere didn’t mention the sequence of events; others even celebrated Scott’s toughness. “Arizona Wildcats upset USC Trojans behind Matt Scott’s heart,” wrote SB Nation’s Kevin Zimmerman. Continue reading
TCB follow-up to Robert “Woodsgate” and this is not the first time the PAC-12 has been under the microscope here at TCB, if you recall “Lockergate” a few years back.
There are hundreds if not thousands of hits on any given weekend in football that will result in concussions across the football landscape, many go unnoticed, except by the trained medical staff (mainly athletic trainers); certainly we see a very limited number on national TV. However last week Robert Woods of USC was drilled in the head while blocking that resulted in OVERT signs of brain trauma. Before we go further we should define what a concussion is, in its simplest terms:
- A concussion, at the very base level, is a pathological event that results from forces to the brain that cause disruption of normal brain activity. These “disruptions” can occur immediately or in a delayed response. Regardless, any disruption of normal physical, cognitive or emotional behavior would fit this criteria.
The new standard of care for concussions across all levels is that if someone exhibits signs of a concussion they should be removed from play for a proper evaluation. If there is no one there to do a proper evaluation (see youth and HS levels) then that player may not be returned to the game and cannot return to sport without a medical clearance from a physician.
As I have stated many a time most evaluations on the sideline are either a case of detective work – weeding through the subjective nature of the injury – or not needed because of the overt signs and clinical presentation. I say this as an expert, one who deals with concussions in sport on almost a daily basis. Observation is the most trusted source for concussion detection; whether it be observation Continue reading
I don’t know if many of you were able to watch the USC/Utah football game last night but there was a very disturbing incident that had to deal with a head injury.
I don’t want to pirate the link from SB Nation so CLICK HERE to see the .gif of the hit and aftermath (its important to my commentary). So to me, Woods gets hit in the head, immediately displays a Fencing Response, looks “lifeless” then returns to his feet only to stumble and eventually fall flat on his face – I seriously doubt he was drinking at the moment.
Then, unbelievably this happens;
According to reporters in the press box, Woods was then seen trying to convince USC trainers he’s up for returning to the field immediately. The Trojans took the field in Utes territory with Woods back in — Samantha Steele reported Woods went through a complete concussion test, but is “good to go.”
How in the world does a high level college football medical staff completely miss this? How is he even allowed to return, heck the officials were looking right at him on his face plant. Did I mention that when he got up from the “drunken stooper” he was walking to the wrong bench?
This is not good people… Granted I was not down there to evaluate him, but the signs CLEARLY indicated a head trauma. If you were watching the St. Louis Rams game Quinten Mikell had a similar incident, although he was KO’ed and did not return.
I will be very interested to see what the reasoning was behind putting him back in the game, other than “he is our best player”.