Can’t Play Any Longer… NOW WHAT?

 

Here is a VERY REAL situation, summarized by one parent (Charles Todd), how things turned out and the fact that the focus on academics saved his son’s college future…..  After reading this, ask yourself, “Is my son/daughter prepared in the event that Plan A ends up being NO plan?”  or  “If sports ended, what will the future look like for my child?”  This is a very real occurance that most don’t like to think about, but you need to be prepared for, just in case!

What do you do when you can’t do what you’re supposed to?  As a student-athlete, what happens when you’re on the outside looking in?  For example, an injury, which is what happened to my son…..

When my son was 5 years old he looked at me and said “dad, when I grow up, I want to be a football player!” I looked his eyes and gave him my word…” I will do everything I can to help make your dreams come true.” From that moment on I watched him work with more determination than most grown men and it paid off! His freshman year of high school he caught the attention some colleges and we realized his dream could actually come true! To make a long story short, by the end of his junior year, he had several football scholarship offers! Now the hard part, getting his ACT, SAT, and his GPA up to qualify academically for college. We got it done!

Now his college dream is a reality! He decided to go play football for a university in Texas, he made it to the 2nd string his freshman year! Talk about an excited parent! Well, by the end of his first semester his grades began to falter… his coaches and myself warned him to pull his grades up or else he could kiss his football dreams goodbye! Of course he pulled his grades up and was on track to be the starting Linebacker in the spring.

Spring ball started and all of us were excited… here we go! Well one week before his spring game he had a concussion during practice…. He would not be able to play in his spring game, but that’s ok, we still have the entire season to look forward to. Well 5 months later, he still had lingering effects from the concussion. We met with the Neurologist on the first day of camp… excited again, we were ready to hear him say “You are released and ready to play” My son felt great! Well, this turned out to be the worst day of his 19 years of life. The Neurologist told us that not only was my son not able to play this season, the damage from his concussion was worse than we thought… The NCAA would not allow him to ever play again, with the fear of it causing long lasting damage.

You cannot play football again!!!… My son looked like that 5 year old all over again, just waiting on me to say something to fix it all! There was nothing I could do… That was the longest drive back to the campus ever! Well, we met with the coaches, and they informed us that because he qualifies for the school academically, they will honor his scholarship and make him an assistant coach. The door to playing football closed and a new chapter has begun… My son, the D1 football coach! Amazing!

We, as a family, struggled with the idea of him never playing again, but as a parent, how much could I enjoy watching him play if I was worried about long lasting brain damage every play! The bottom line is that without him understanding the importance of the “Student” part of being a student-athlete… this story would have a very different ending! You never know what play will be your last… Your education is key, playing a sport is just a perk of your journey!

We are going to be ok… the football door has closed but a new door has opened, and the future is so much brighter!

 

For comments, questions or if you would like Charles Todd to come speak to your team or at your school or association, please email:   info@viewmysport.com

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Charles Todd is the parent of a college football player and yes, he survived the high school recruiting jungle!  Through the ViewMySport blog, he will continue to share his experiences and give you instructions on what worked during his son’s recruiting process, in hopes that it will help guide you on how to get your young student-athlete recognized by college coaches.