Twenty-four middle aged former Ticats contacted by The Spec took a test to measure
how their cognitive abilities have been affected by concussion as they age.
Numerous former Ticats are struggling at home with mental and physical injuries that they can't help but attribute to their former glory days.
The results raise questions about how best to protect today's players
and whether enough is being done for those now in middle aged
and suffering from the effects of their playing careers.
The results provide an alarming glimpse of their cognitive abilities decades after they left the field.
Experts who reviewed The Spec's data, had differing opinions on what the results mean,
noting the sample size is too small to reach definitive conclusions. But all agree
the poor results are reason for concern and add to the growing call for more research
into the long-term effects of head injuries in sport.
The sample study was too small to draw definite scientific conclusions
about the affect of concussions but I am glad that
the Spectator chose to publish this article about it.
[Leo] Ezerins, the official advocate for league alumni, admits he feels the urge to defend the sport and the league.
That sentiment led Ezerins to raise concerns regarding
The Spec's project as it was being conducted.
The David Braley Sport Medicine and Rehabilitation Centre at McMaster University
was involved with the project since its inception and agreed to interpret the results.
Just after the testing was completed Ezerins and former Ticat Alumni president, Dave Lane,
met with representatives from McMaster and ImPACT. expressing their concerns
that the study might "reflect poorly on the game." Five days later, McMaster
informed The Spectator that it was no longer willing to interpret the test results.
“We're really protecting the sport and protecting the CFL,? Ezerins said.
“It's a very important issue and we want to make sure it doesn't reflect poorly
on the game of football, that we have the proper perspective.
“There's a lot of fear.?
Since the study wasn't large enough to be scientifically conclusive, I can see their point too.