Coaches: Despite precautions, some injures just bad luck
NATCHEZ — Cathedral head coach Ron Rushing said his team does everything it can to protect players.
From strength and conditioning to teaching proper technique, Rushing said much of what the coaches do is to help players prevent injuries, but sometimes things just happen.
Green Wave Tight end/linebacker Turner Janette and lineman Colby Horton are both expected to miss significant playing time because of injuries. Janette sustained his injury in the weight room, while Horton was hurt because another player rolled into him in Friday’s game against Adams County Christian School.
“Sometimes things happen,” Rushing said. “It’s unfortunate. A lot of it is just part of the game. Broken legs and hands, it’s just a matter of bad luck.”
ACCS head coach David King, who lost receiver Tyler Buckles and lineman Cage Dill for the season due to injuries against Cathedral on Friday, said football always carries a certain amount of risk.
“It’s a contact sport, and there’s a risk, no question about it,” King said. “There are guys walking the street now who have problems walking and stuff like that just from playing ball.”
Buckles played most of the first half despite having a fractured C4 and C5 vertebrae, a bruised spinal cord and a concussion. Buckles claimed he didn’t have any initial signs of a concussion when he sustained the injury on the second play of the game.
“We just didn’t know,” King said. “If someone has an ACL tear, you can see them holding their legs. With something like (Buckles’ injury), you’re thinking, ‘Lord, how in the world could he play if he had it?’”
Rushing said the MHSAA makes its coaches take a course on concussions, and he always defers to athletic trainers when it comes to injuries.
“If there’s any doubt in our minds, we hold them out,” Rushing said. “We definitely want them to play through a little pain, but if it’s something serious, they need to let us know.”
King said in the last 15 years, the quality of athletic trainers and support staff has gone up as more people learn about football-related injuries and how to treat them.
“I don’t remember the last game we played where there wasn’t someone on the sideline and an ambulance on call,” King said.