Chaney’s 2011 Findings

Matt Chaney is a writer, editor, teacher and restaurant worker living in Missouri, USA. His 2001 graduate thesis study for an MA degree at the University of Central Missouri was qualitative media analysis of 466 football reports, historical print coverage of anabolic steroids and HGH in American football, largely based on electronic search among thousands of news texts from the 1970s through 1999. For more information, including contact numbers and his 2009 book, Spiral of Denial: Muscle Doping in American Football, visit the homepage at

Matt Chaney has taken it upon himself to find information about catastrophic injuries associated with American football.  Chaney is a former college football player that has become concerned with the relative “under-reporting” of catastrophic injuries in football.  This official task has primarily been up to the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research, University of North Carolina.  The NCCSIR provides the catastrophic injury rates for sports, painting a picture of “worst case” injuries.

What Chaney has discovered in his electronic survey for 2011 is 220 cases of football catastrophic injuries, 194 survivor cases and 26 deaths.  For comparison in 2009 and 2010 the NCCSIR reported 44 and 24 survivor cases, where Chaney found 165 survivor cases for those two years.

Chaney does not hold his information as medical record, rather an electronic search that fit the guidelines of catastrophic injury surveillance.  Here is an excerpt from his post (for an annotated case by case and the full article click HERE);

Last fall in Oklahoma, athletic trainer Dan Dodson saw the horrific side of tackle football become manifest.

Grave injury struck down three teen players under Dodson’s watch, leaving one dead, from one team.

In a span of barely three weeks, Edmond North High School became site of perhaps the worst cluster of acute casualties in known history of American football. Continue reading

Injury Statistics

Statistics are seemingly becoming a major part of all of our lives; from your favorite baseball players batting average, to the graduation rate of the school system, to your fantasy football team, to the injury rate of particular activities.  Being an athletic trainer the later is important, not only does it paint a picture of “expected” injuries we should be on top of, it also provides information for us to use in terms of making solid decisions about return to sport.

If a player sustains an injury that occurs a high percentage of the time in the sport, then when returning there are different things we can do, in terms of preventative measures, to possibly avoid a re-injury.  Along with that, if a player sustains a “freak injury” and obtains complete recovery statistics can tell us if playing again is a good idea at all.

This is why it is important to have all the available information be correct and up to date; more and more decisions not only from athletic trainers but parents about playing are made from such injury statistics.  One of the “gold standards” of injury surveillance for athletic training is Continue reading