Reggie Garrett, who was a West Orange, Texas, high school football player, had just pitched his second touchdown pass of the game Friday night when he jogged into the sidelines, gave a trainer a low-five and dropped.
Just over an hour later, doctors at Memorial Hermann Baptist Orange Hospital announced the 17-year-old senior dead.
Football deaths remain infrequent, but the sport can be dangerous. That doesn’t mean children should not play, experts say, but it does imply parents and coaches should take injuries seriously.
According to the American Football Coaches Association, deaths directly caused by soccer accidents have been rising since 1931, when the institution began keeping records, and deaths from indirect causes have held steady since 1966.
In addition to that, over fifteen others (12 high schoolers, one non-school participant and two college players) died of indirect causes, such as an underlying medical problem or heat stroke, the report stated.
Concussion testing prevents players from concealing their head injuries for fear of being benched, said Elizabeth Jacobs, a pediatric emergency medicine physician at Hasbro Children’s Hospital who’s helping to execute preseason testing for all 10,000 high school athletes who play sports at Rhode Island.