BOSTON (AP) -Sixteen athletes, including six former NFL players, have agreed to donate their brains to a program that will study the long-term effects of concussions, a founder of an organization running it said Wednesday.
``Our goal is for people to start taking concussions seriously,'' said Chris Nowinski, a former pro wrestler and Harvard football player. ``That means getting off the field when they receive them and finding ways to prevent them.''
The study is a joint effort by Nowinski's Sports Legacy Institute and the Boston University School of Medicine. They are collaborating in the new Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy.
Among former NFL players who have agreed to donate their brains after their deaths are Ted Johnson, Frank Wycheck, Isaiah Kacyvenski and Ben Lynch. Also participating are Noah Welch, who played hockey for the Florida Panthers last season, and Cindy Parlow, a former member of the U.S. national soccer team.
hing wrong with me,'' Johnson, a former New England Patriots linebacker, told The New York Times for a story first published Tuesday night on its Web site.
The 35-year-old's neurologist has pointed to Johnson's multiple concussions between 2002-05 as a cause of his permanent and degenerative problems with memory and depression.
``I'm not being vindictive. I'm not trying to reach up from the grave and get the NFL,'' Johnson added. ``But any doctor who doesn't connect concussions with long-term effects should be ashamed of themselves.''
Nowinski has seen greater awareness to dangers from concussions.
``Whereas three years ago I tried to speak on this issue and coaches were able to keep me out of their schools because they didn't want their kids to be scared,'' he said, ``now, for example, we just ran all New Hampshire Pop Warner head coaches through an educational program. They're now holding kids out much more often because they can recognize the concussions better.''
Nowinski said SLI is setting up a registry with the names the people who have agreed to donate their brains and that Boston University will oversee the scientific aspects.
ustin Strzelczyk were the first four.
``We support all research that would further the scientific and medical understanding of this injury, which affects thousands of people, athletes and nonathletes alike, every year,'' NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said. ``Hundreds of thousands of people have played football and other sports without experiencing any problem of this type, and there continues to be considerable debate in the medical community on the precise long-term effects of concussions and how they relate to other risk factors.''
Grimsley died in February of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in February that police ruled an accident.
The NFL is conducting its own study on concussions, and Aiello expected the results to be published in 2010.

Recent NFL Discussions

Betting the 2017 NFL Draft on Tue, Apr 2017 by Blade
NFL Draft Preview on Tue, Apr 2017 by Blade
2017 Heisman Odds on Wed, Mar 2017 by Blade
College / NBA today on Sun, Mar 2017 by TtomBoBadly
SNOW on Tue, Mar 2017 by Michael Cash

Top NFL Public Bets

NFL Top Stories

Thumbnail Alabama NFL Draft Odds The Alabama Crimson Tide could have a lot of players taken in the first round of the NFL Draft next week. How many...
Thumbnail Odds Theory & Fantasy: Perfect Combo In America alone over 110 million people settled down to watch February’s Super Bowl and were rewarded by a game which saw many twists and turns along the way. Of...
Thumbnail Romo moving to CBS After a lot of discussion about where Tony Romo will be next season, it appears that he will be behind a broadcast booth.
Thumbnail Patriots remain SB52 Favorites With NFL free agency slowing down dramatically over the past week, here's a look at the most recent Super Bowl 52 odds to win.
Thumbnail The Next Atlanta Falcons Despite suffering one of the greatest collapses in sports history at Super Bowl LI, the Atlanta Falcons still managed to overcome significant odds to reach the NFL’s...

NFL Team Pages