Bonnergate in Nashville


I missed this case of another NCAA athlete that quite possibly was mismanaged.  We discussed the Josh Huff case in the Rose Bowl yesterday, HERE.  Thanks to an astute observer and commenter, presumably an athletic trainer, here is what happened, thanks Bryan (BTW it is you the reader that help us with the stories that matter);

Watching the Miss St. / Wake Forest Bowl game yesterday, the game kicked off for the second half. WF returned the ball and Miss St. DB Wade Bonner (#7) assisted on the tackle on the WF sideline. At the end of the play Bonner lay on the sideline on his stomach pointed towards the field. For a few moments he didn’t move, then got up gingerly and attempted to run forward. He instead went directly sideways for 5 yards, nearly running over the side judge spotting the ball at the end of the return. The side judge obviously noticed he was not ok and held on to him and turned across the field and motioned for help.

At this point the camera switches to the WF QB who is doing the college football routine of “Stare at the sideline blindly waiting for the coach to make up his mind about the play call”. Assumed it was taking so long because they were getting Bonner off the field. Wrong, just as WF walked to the line, the same side judge had to hold the game, run to the defensive safety spot where Bonner was lined up for the next play and make the Miss St. staff come get him. Good for the ref for following his responsibility and making him sit out.

So what happens? You guessed it. Less than a minute later Bonner is back on the field playing. You’d think that the medical staff for Miss St. might take longer than that to do a proper evaluation other than “You, ok?”. A situation where a ref physically stops the game to go ensure a player is actually taken off to be evaluated wouldn’t throw up some flags?

I understand they can’t see that play clear across the field, but that referee doing what he did (during a nationally televised bowl game none the less) had to indicate something at least.

Don’t know what the solution is, but there are only 32 NFL teams, there are only so many Colt McCoy incidents that can statistically happen. How many NCAA games are there?

I cannot find a video of this incident, but I am sure that “Bryan” is not making up the situation.  “Bryan” also made mention of a case in the Outback Bowl where Georgia safety Shawn Williams had a similar situation;

I watched a similar situation happen with Georgia strong safety Shawn Williams. He went in for a tackle and caught his helmet straight on to the Mich. St. player’s hip (Luckily it wasn’t a cervical fracture). Was in a very similar position to Huff, but managed to get himself standing. Even according to the announcers there was a delay as he “slowly took himself off the field, obviously a little ‘dinged up’…”. They then commented on the 3rd play after that where “Here comes Williams back onto the field obviously feeling ok”.

Moral of the stories: If you are an elite player on an elite team you get very little concern for your overall brain health.  This is just pitiful.

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