One of the many benefits of working at a newspaper is that expert advice is never far away.
When my younger boy decided to play football in the 7th grade, I was concerned. He had played other sports — basketball, baseball. But football seemed not just difficult, but dangerous.
As I was brooding on this I noticed my colleague Rick Telander, nearby at a desk — not his desk, since he was never in the newsroom long enough to need one, instead traveling the world covering sports. He was once a star cornerback at Northwestern and drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs. He knows this stuff.
I told him my kid was starting football and asked if he had any sage advice. He replied immediately with one sentence:
“When he gets his first concussion, make him quit.”
Right, Rick was also in the forefront of moving the concussion disaster from guilty NFL secret to general public knowledge. I promised him I would.
But most people don’t work at a newspaper. Which is why my attention was caught by a bright, newly published volume called “#HeySportsParents! An Essential Guide for Any Parent With a Child in Sports” by Sharkie Zartman and Dr. Robert Weil. The former, a five-time All American volleyball champion at UCLA; the latter, a Chicago podiatrist with a radio show, “The Sports Doctor.”
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