When this proposal was made back in 2014 for the 2015 season, there was a lot of anxiety and pushback against the mandate, with a number of reasons invoked. Certainly the process was not nearly optimal, as we covered in depth at the time. Part of it was the belief it would lead to a more physical approach by the players themselves by those with long-time experience in the sport and knowledgeable about the difference between the Girls’ and Boys’ rules and spirit of how the game was to be played. And it was certainly fair to say that there was some element of a male-dominated Board of Directors in Gainesville telling women what they should think without much input from them.
Yesterday, the New York Times carried an article written by Bill Pennington (LINK) that was a recap of the five year study cycle conducted by the University of Florida, headed by lead researcher Dr. Daniel Herman, and the report indicates, in Dr. Herman’s own words quoted in the article “nothing but good news.”
In the article, USA Lacrosse’s VP Ann Carpinetti called the study “compelling and very notable” and said she expected it to spawn considerable discourse nationwide. USA Lacrosse, which co-funded the study along with the National Operating Committee for Standards on Athletic Equipment, has not issued a headgear recommendation (this paragraph is from the article).
This is significant because USA Lacrosse offered testimony back in 2014 that was certainly taken as being against the mandate in Florida due to reasons that can be found in the FLN articles back then.
There was a presentation made yesterday to the American Academy of Pediatrics and there will be a USA Lacrosse Sport Medicine Symposium on this upcoming Wednesday and Thursday to present the findings.
We have reached out to Dr. Herman and hope he will be available before the USA Lacrosse presentation, and if so, hopefully will do an interview with us.
We’ll update the story this week as more information is released.
Here’s stories from our coverage back then (some were written by Brian Davis and some by Lee Roggenburg):