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Football’s Days are Numbered: State of Mass. Mulls Ban on Youth Football

One day, you may have to explain to your great grandkids what the Super Bowl was.

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Another straw has been loaded onto football’s creaking back in Massachusetts as the state legislature considers a ban on kids playing tackle football.

Not only would the new bill ban youth tackle football, but it would also impose a fine of $2,000 on any organization that might allow kids to play contact football.

This really tends to show that the game’s days are numbered, and it can’t be too many decades before it disappears entirely. With more and more parents steering kids away from the sport in the first place and more and more schools worried about lawsuits over injuries, the game is headed for the ash heap of history.

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After all, if kids don’t grow up with football in their lives, there will be fewer people interested in playing the sport, fewer kids turning out for school teams, fewer football programs in colleges, and a shrinking professional venue. It is bound to happen in the long run if things continue down the road they are on now.

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According to a bipartisan group of House members, tackle football is “more harmful to young players than previously thought,” as WGBH reported.

“We’re not banning football. Touch football, flag football, great. Up through the seventh grade, go to it,” said bill sponsor Rep. Paul Schmid (D-Westport). “What we’re saying is, for seventh grade and under, no tackle football.”

“There’s a lot of science … that says we got to be really careful with young heads,” Schmid added.

Rep. Schmid went on to insist that the state must step in to ban tackle football for the whole state because there is no state-wide authority to handle rules for youth sports.

House Minority Leader Brad Jones added that the data lawmakers used to back the ban is “just so compelling.”

“I think people need to continue to have this conversation and become more aware of it,” Jones added.

Lawmakers relied on information provided by Concussion Legacy Foundation Co-Founder Chris Nowinski, a former NFL football player.

“There’s evidence out of the Boston University CTE Center that football players who started before age 12 were worse off long-term, with higher rates of depression, higher rates of anxiety, higher rates of memory issues than those who started at 12 or later,” Nowinski said. according to WGBH.

If Massachusetts were to pass the bill, it would become the first state to ban tackle football for its children.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

 

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Sports

LeBron James Discovers that Michael Jordan is STILL the GOAT in the Public’s Eyes

…And it wasn’t even CLOSE.

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LeBron James may be the media’s favorite liberal athlete, but in the public’s eye, Michael Jordan still takes GOAT status, and it isn’t even close. James has been racking up more achievements every season and for the last few years debate has raged over whether James has finally taken GOAT status (greatest of all time) away from Michael Jordon. But while sports reporters and NBA statisticians may bicker over the particulars, it appears that the public still considers LeBron James a pretender to the GOAT. As Business Insider noted: Supporters of Jordan pointed to Jordan’s six championships, his undefeated record in the NBA Finals, and his overall influence in taking the NBA’s popularity to a new level as reasons why he’s the best. Fans of James point to his longevity, his eight consecutive NBA Finals appearances, of which he won three, and his overall brilliance on the floor beyond scoring. James is also still at his peak and passing Jordan in several statistical achievements. But a new INSIDER poll finds that James is a big loser in this barnyard battle. The poll of 1,082 Americans found former Bulls star Michael Jordan earned 66 percent of the GOAT vote while James only saw 10.4 percent support for top status. Others who found small numbers of supporters included Larry Bird, Wilt Chamberlain, Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Stephen Curry. Jordan picked up support across all ages, not dipping below 54 percent in any age range. Granted respondents between the ages of 18-29 were more enthusiastic about James, then again many of those respondents weren’t around for Michael Jordan’s great career. Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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Sports

Murder Conviction for Former NFL Player Aaron Hernandez Reinstated

With its decision, the high court agreed with state prosecutors who said it was not fair to vacate Hernandez’ conviction.

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The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has reinstated the murder conviction of former NFL player Aaron Hernandez in a decision that Overturns decades of legal precedent. The state’s highest court ruled that the practice of vacating a criminal conviction if the defendant dies during the case is a nonsensical practice and that the doctrine will be ended in the Bay State, according to the Boston Globe. Hernandez was convicted of murder in 2015 and was in the process of appealing the conviction when he committed suicide in jail in 2017. His lawyers then filed for abatement ab initio to vacate the conviction because he died during the appeal. But the state Supreme Court ruled against vacating the conviction. “We conclude that the doctrine of abatement ab initio is outdated and no longer consonant with the circumstances of contemporary life, if, in fact, it ever was,” Justice Elspeth Cypher wrote. With its decision, the high court agreed with state prosecutors who said it was not fair to vacate Hernandez’ conviction. During his arguments before the court, Bristol District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III said, “The practice of wiping out a jury verdict like it never occurred is not fair or equitable. Just to snap your finger and have that go away because the defendant died — it’s not fair.” The former New England Patriots player committed suicide two days after he was acquitted in a second murder case concerning the deaths of two men which occurred in 2012. Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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