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Football is a physical, often brutal game played by relatively large, fast, powerful players. Despite the finest equipment available, injuries will occur. Most colleges today employ certified trainers and team physicians who screen athletes in the pre season for human deficiencies. Corrections in diet, exersise, muscle mass, and flexibility are often addressed here. Complete pre season medical exams are often required by either conference guidelines, insurance carriers, or school administrators and should be performed even if not required. The signing of some type of release form acknowledging a certain assumption of risk are usually required by most athletes.

Once the season is under way, these trainers and or physicians often dictate when a player is ready to return from an injury, or whether and when a player who "had his bell rung" can return to the game.

Football is a game. True it is the single greatest game ever conceived and played by men of such character that they often later climb to great social stature and success. But it is still just a game. Football has never been, nor will it ever be more important than any single human being that ever played it. As I mentioned earlier, a coach should wear his heart on his sleeve. Players can ascertain how much a coach really cares for the individuals on his or her team by the manner in which he or she speaks of, to, and about those players. Another barometer indicative of a coach's real concern for a player is how the coach reacts to the player's absence. For example a coach arguing with the team physician and trying to compel a player back before ready could, in effect, convey to the player that his or her sole worth can only be achieved on the field. A "nagging" injury that seems to never go away can often be a sign that the injury has never been allowed to properly heal before returning to action.
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