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Times reporter Bob Condotta keeps the news coming about the Montlake Dawgs.

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July 23, 2008 7:28 PM

ACC to release official injury reports

Posted by Bob Condotta

I spotted this one a few days late, but here's an interesting story that the ACC plans to release official injury reports for all of its member schools twice a week this season.

Here's another story with even more detail, saying that the league will announce pending surgeries and season-ending injuries on Monday and then a status report for the weekend on Thursday based on the NFL's long-time standards of out, doubtful, questionable and probable.

This could be a good thing if everyone goes along with it, though the ACC says schools that don't comply won't be punished in any way (I've heard nothing to indicate the Pac-10 is considering anything like this).

Sounds like it was an idea of North Carolina State coach Tom O'Brien, who was a finalist for the UW job when he was at Boston College when it instead went to Tyrone Willingham, and he's to be applauded for trying something.

Injury updates are one of the biggest constant sources of friction between coaches --- most of whom want to keep that info as secret as possible (including Willingham); and reporters --- who mostly are trying to get the info at the behest of fans, who want to know who is playing that weekend.

Since there's never been any uniformity, each college sets its injury-update policy based coach. Guys like Arizona State's Dennis Erickson or USC's Pete Carroll have generally been pretty open about injuries, apparently figuring everyone is going to find out anyway. WSU has released official injury reports through its SID office the last few years.

Other schools, however, try to keep that info as hush-hush as possible, seeming to view keeping injuries quiet as a way to get a competitive edge (and in Willingham's case, it fits in with his close-to-the-vest manner about every topic).

The view of many coaches is typified in the quote in The Sporting News story by Virginia coach Al Groh saying he's in favor of the reports, but apparently only so he won't have to answer all those "stupid questions.''

It must be comforting for parents or relatives of Virginia's players to know that Groh views queries about the health of those players as "stupid.'' Wonder if he feels the same way when those parents or relatives ask him directly how their loved ones are doing? In essence, that's all we're doing --- asking the question for the thousands out there who don't have the same access we do but want to know, many of whom may be a high school coach or teacher of the player in question.

I can attest that whenever a player is injured, I gets tons of e-mails and questions asking how the player is doing, a good recent case in point being the Juan Garcia situation.

Reporters ask because fans want to know. And while coaches often want to publicly hold to the "next man up'' theory of simply moving on once a player is injured, it's not that simple for fans, who often grow emotionally attached to the players they watch --- they wouldn't pay all that money for tickets (money that helps pay the increasingly high salaries of Groh and his fellow coaches) if they didn't care so much.

Maybe standardized injury reports would at least end the song-and-dance between coaches and reporters, though if there's nothing compelling the coaches to comply, such reports might not carry much credibility.

And there will always be uncertainty --- listing a player as "questionable'' on Thursday wouldn't prevent that player from being able to play on Saturday. Still, it'll be interesting to see how this is received in the ACC and if it becomes a standard throughout college football.

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Posted by bellingham husky

8:11 PM, Jul 23, 2008

hardest workin man in th blog business..... Bob Condotta

Posted by BigDog

8:42 PM, Jul 23, 2008

I know each coach is looking for an edge, however it says a lot that Carroll and Erickson are confident enough in their game plan and back-ups to let the "cat out of the bag" so to speak. I wish we had that confidence.

Posted by scott

9:22 PM, Jul 23, 2008

I wish Ty spent more time worrying about things like blocking, tackling and game planning and less about trying to find some absurd competitive edge with KGB like transparency.

Posted by bingbong

10:09 PM, Jul 23, 2008

hope you feel better after getting that off your chest!

here's me-
hey suck and poog fans; kiss. my. *ss.
thanks fer comin by!

the blog has been awsome, a blast to read, and full of new content. thanks a bunch, bob.

go dawgs!

as you were.

Posted by onewoodwacker

10:18 PM, Jul 23, 2008

Hey Boise -

I know I said this stuff earlier but it did not stay on the board long so I'm repeating myself!!

Anyway - went golfing today and when I got home Bob had put like 6 new topics on the board - never got a chance to see the BYU stuff you were refering to.

I did read your comments regarding the 06-07 BSU comparison, good points. Seattle Dave doesn't think we have a chance of getting Bronco here next year if it does not work out for Ty (I hope it does) this year, mainly because he's LDS.

Tried to tell him that I'm LDS, our church does not interfere with a person's choice of jobs - ever; I say that though he's loved at BYU, he could not be anymore loved than Urban Meyers was at Utah. Money talks, Pac-10 vs. MWC, BCS Conference, Jake Heaps (LDS) at Skyline - lots to like about this job.

Of course - the point is moot at this time, but if things change I see his name, Ed Donatell's name, maybe even Jeff Tedford's name (if Cal does not give him the facilities they promised him, and this lawsuit looks like it just might stop that promise, Jeff tedford is going to leave Cal) at the top of the Husky's wish list.

Posted by Colonel Sanders

11:33 PM, Jul 23, 2008

Bob - the elephant in the room here is gambling. Isn't that why the NFL has its injury reporting protocol and takes it so seriously?

The ACC is only acting on what the NFL recognized a long time ago - that a uniform reporting protocol for injuries is necessary to prevent gambling insiders from exploiting asymmetrical information.

Posted by Spanaway Dave

12:37 AM, Jul 24, 2008

Colonel Sanders,

You're exactly right, IMHO. Fans caring or being curious about the health of players has no traction with any of the coaches who would just as soon hold back info that makes the opposing coaches job easier.

That information, however, has a HUGE impact on gambling. Reporters get those questions about injuries mostly because gamblers are looking for confidence when they lay down their money.

My feeling, quite honestly, is let gamblers watch out for themselves. Give the edge back to the coaches who are trying to do their jobs - which is to win games. Why take a tool out of the hands of coaches and give it to the gamblers? I don't like it.

Spanaway Dave

Posted by atlantadawg

8:39 AM, Jul 24, 2008

Bob, good post - and I agree with your assesment. We forget that these players are young, they are kids - and when of them goes down - yeah the team moves on, but it could have a big impact on their lives and future in football - so a little sensitivity to the matter is in order.

I really don't see how withholding info is a huge competitive edge, and agree with the prior poster, we should be worrying about the basics, like blocking and tackling (which were issues for us last year).......

Posted by jh

10:01 AM, Jul 24, 2008

..."North Carolina State coach Tom O'Brien, who was a finalist for the UW job when he was at Boston College when it instead went to Tyrone Willingham"...

...Todd Turner should put this on his gravestone...what a difference for UW if a good coach like O'Brien had been picked over "your boy" ty...

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