Missouri Reports Decline

September 27, 2017

The Missouri State High School Activities Association recently found that the number of high school football players in the state has decreased by 2,000 in the last two years. According to CBS St. Louis, concerns about the long-term effects of concussions have led to fewer students participating, particularly at small schools.

Tom Fiala, Athletic Director at the St. Louis Priory School, which had to cancel its game with Lutheran North last Saturday due to not having enough players, said high schoolers should not be concerned about concussions, and hoped to educate parents about concussions.

“The studies that they do in regards to NFL players that have played in the league for 10 or 12 years,” Fiala said. “It was their job, and it was something they were doing every day.”

Ronda Hubbard, Athletic Director at Grandview High in Hillsboro, Mo., said 85 percent of her team is composed of freshmen and sophomores this year, thus leading the school to end its varsity program. Despite that, she expressed the belief that football would regain its popularity.

“Football has been mainstay in our society and I think it will continue to be,” Hubbard said. “Actually, when speaking specifically about our situation, I’m super encouraged about the direction of our football program.”

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