Nor yet the last to lay the old aside."
Alexander Pope, English writer (1688–1744)
A recent newspaper article mentioned that a small college would be closing their football program. I think that would be difficult to do with so much investment involved. There’s the established playing field and stadium, the practice field, the coaches’ positions and offices, the trainers, those who keep the playing field as perfect as possible, and on and on.
Many people depend on an existing football program. So many things would have to change in order to close down a current football program. And then don’t forget the fans.
On the other hand, a school (high school or college) that doesn’t already have a football program might do well to think judiciously before starting one. An increase in the number of football players who suffer concussions is documented. News reports show more long-term detrimental consequences of those head injuries than was once thought.
Are the fleeting moments when football players bask in the cheers of a roaring crowd a fair price to pay for possible monumental suffering later in life? Many players might answer that in the affirmative. Until they’re the ones to suffer.
So bottom line: if you have a football program in place, do you keep it to protect the investment? And if you don’t already have a football program there, should you decide against starting one to protect the young people who would play?
I’m glad I don’t have to make such decisions.
What has your experience been with football? Has a family member played?