Graphic Accessed from CDC.gov.
By Preston Blake
Students all over the world look to sports to take up their free time outside of their studies. Whether this be a sport directly linked to the school or not. Sports are a fun and exciting activity to take up your free time and form a sense of comradery between you, your coaches, and of course your fellow teammates. However with how fun sports may be they all come with risk, some more than others. The risk of getting hurt playing sports may be a bit higher than most of us would expect depending on the sport of course.
When looking at all college sports cumulatively, there is no shortage of examples we can site for students getting hurt whilst playing especially in football. Football is the poster child for injuries not only in college games but in professional as well but that’s not what we are concerned with here. According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), out of every 1000 college football players, 8.9 of them get seriously injured each year which doesn’t sound like a high number but when you take into consideration that there are on average over 12650 college athletes a year playing football that brings the number of serious injuries up to about 113 serious injuries a year, in just football! That not it though, if you look at the overall percentage of college player injuries across all sports both major and minor, a whopping 90% of college athletes report they have been injured whilst playing and a whopping 54% say they have continued playing after being injured. With how many cases football has it’s actually not the most. Wrestling actually holds that title. While it is true that football has the most injuries during competitive games, wrestling has slightly more injuries considering they have to practice as well and practices can be just as intense as a competitive match.
For aspiring star athletes, injuries may just ruin lives. Since students who seriously participate in sports often get scholarships, they rely on those scholarships to back the majority of their cost of attendance. When a college player gets injured they can lose their scholarship and a large number of injured college athletes are unfortunately forced to drop out of school because they can not afford it on their own without the help of those scholarships. There is a multitude of different kinds of injuries a player may experience whilst play with certain ones being a lot more common in certain sports such as concussions. Concussions are the result of an impact hitting you so hard (mainly in the head) that your brain smacks up against the side of your skull. Concussions can have many different effects such as amnesia, blackouts, nausea, and even depression. In the NFL there were 214 cases of concussion in the year 2018 which is a staggering amount which only goes up considering there a lot more high school and college players that don’t fall into that number. Concussions aren’t the only thing to worry about though, some of the more common injuries occur such as knee and shoulder injuries wherein sports like football and basketball are quite common.
Skagit is of course not immune to our own cases of student injuries, although they are rare. One such case was now famous Hollywood actor Jeffry Dean Morgan who attended Skagit valley college in the years 1984 and 1985. Before becoming an ultra-famous celebrity, Morgan attended Skagit for a short while where he played basketball. Before attending Skagit, Morgan led a very successful athletic career at Lake Washington high school. He started out the season solid but one day he was unfortunately injured and unable to participate for the rest of the season. This led Morgan to give up on basketball altogether. He said, “The only reason I went to college was to play basketball. I injured my knee and couldn’t play.” Six years after his injury he would go on to star in his first major films cementing himself in Hollywood.
If you are a student aspiring to be the next headliner athlete at Skagit or anywhere else you may attend or are simply looking at sports to take up some free time you may have, you should go for it if you think it’s for you but just be aware that there are serious and somewhat common risks you may be taking with your health. Accidents happen and injuries occurring in sports is basically inevitable, some injuries are a lot worse than others, and players and parents should be informed of the risks compared to the rewards. With over 113 college students being injured per year from sports, it’s at least something to consider.