Starkville Daily News - - FO­RUM -

But fid­dling with the rules to re­duce risk is like ad­vis­ing al­co­holics to cut back. Short of giv­ing up tackle foot­ball, these schools are en­sur­ing that a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of stu­dents will suf­fer se­ri­ous in­juries to their ex­cel­lent brains.

Har­vard and Yale, of course, are just two

of the hun­dreds of col­leges that have var­sity foot­ball teams. Why should they be sin­gled out for do­ing what so many are do­ing?

One rea­son is that elite ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions have large re­spon­si­bil­i­ties. Univer­si­ties that are aca­demic lead­ers have no busi­ness pre­tend­ing there is no prob­lem or waiting for oth­ers to act.

Their stature also gives them out­size in­flu­ence. If Yale's Peter Salovey and Har­vard's Drew

Gilpin Faust were to move to aban­don the sport for rea­sons of health and safety, ad­min­is­tra­tors at other col­leges would be con­fronted with the ques­tion in a way they could not avoid.

With ev­ery game, Yale and Har­vard are know­ingly ex­pos­ing their young charges to the se­ri­ous risk of per­ma­nent in­ca­pac­i­tat­ing neu­ro­log­i­cal in­juries. How many stu­dents' brains have to be wrecked be­fore they de­cide to stop?

Steve Chap­man blogs at http://www.chicagotri­­ion/chap­man. Fol­low him on Twit­ter @SteveChap­man13 or at https:// www.face­­man13. To find out more about Steve Chap­man and read fea­tures by other Creators Syn­di­cate writ­ers and car­toon­ists, visit the Creators Syn­di­cate web­site at

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