Gregg Easterbrook discusses the positive and negative aspects of football in this book. Easterbrook is a football commentator for ESPN and NFL Live. He has also coached high school football, so I really trust that the information he provides is accurate. Football is a sport that encourages team work. Football can encourage young people to be physically active. But, it also is a sport that promotes aggression, drug use, and weight gain. Easterbrook does not mention steroids in this book, but he does discuss Adderall. This is a drug that many players take to help them stay attentive and focused. Use of pain medication is also prevalent in college and pro football. I did not know about this kind of drug abuse in football. I learned that the lives of former football players end tragically after their playing days are done. Former Eagle linemen Chris Mims died at the age of the 38 weighing 465 pounds. Linebacker Junior Seau took his own life in his early forties.
Easterbrook provides suggestions on how to reform the sport. He advocates getting rid of the three point stance in football. The three point stance is where a player's head is down when the ball is snapped. This stance makes it more likely that a player will suffer a head injury from helmet to helmet contact. Easterbrook suggests a two point stance. This is s stance where a player's head is up. This distinct change would lessen head injuries. Easterbrook also suggests including the college graduation rate into a football poll ranking. He believes that the academic standards of a college is equally important as the number of wins that a team has. Easterbrook also believes that a college coach should be suspended if less than half of his players do not graduate. I am in favor of all of these reforms.
Football is a sport where the majority of college players do not finish their college educations. The best college football teams like Alabama and USC graduate less than half of their football players. Easterbrook provides an excellent example Frank Beamer. He has been the head football coach at Virginia Tech for twenty-seven years. In 2012, 79% of his players left Virginia Tech with a college degree. Collin Carroll, the long snapper on Virginia Tech's 2012 Sugar Bowl team, is pursuing a masters degree in journalism. His team mate, offensive linemen Blake DeChristopher, has not had professional success as a football player But, he has also continued his education in graduate school Easterbrook really provides both the positive and negative insights of football well in this book.
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