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Posts Tagged ‘CIS’

Injuries and sports go hand and hand but no matter how many games you watch or play… nothing can tone down, or prepare you for the feeling that sets in when an athlete lies motionless with a suspected neck injury.

It’s terrifying, the consequences are permanent and life changing.

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(Photo: CBC)

So when Bishop’s university football player Joe Fortin was placed on a spinal board at Percival Molson stadium on Friday night the reaction, the outpouring of concern, the fear of the worst case scenario was all understandable.

The stadium held its breath… and waited for help to arrive.

It took a while.

It was 27 minutes before an ambulance showed up. An unacceptable delay which was swiftly criticized on twitter by those watching this young man wait for help.

Bishop’s graduate and Sportsnet reporter Arash Madani was one of the most vocal, “Emergency protocols must be instituted IMMEDIATELY at all arenas/stadiums for amateur sport. Initial moments after major trauma is critical” he tweeted.

Madani is right. But the sad part is… in the CIS changes are LONG overdue.

In 2004 I was a defensive back for the Mount Allison Mounties. Playing in Halifax against Saint Mary’s University, the quarterback scrambled on a broken play and I rallied down to make a tackle. I didn’t quite make it. My linebacker caught the quarterback from behind, as he fell forward I jumped to avoid him. But at the same time my teammate was blocked from behind and fell head first into the into the collision area. As I jumped my left leg was caught between my teammate’s helmet and the quarterback’s helmet. It snapped like a twig about six inches above the ankle.

Just like Joe Fortin on Friday night, I had to wait nearly 30 minutes for an ambulance to arrive. After team trainers wrapped my leg in whatever was available, I was dragged to the sideline, given a piece of foam to bite down on, and told help was on the way.

I was lucky it was a clean break and the delay didn’t cause permanent nerve damage to my leg. But i’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I can only imagine what Fortin was thinking as he waited 27 minutes strapped to a spinal board.

In the end Fortin was not paralyzed, but the fact that ten years after my injury CIS football players are still left to revel in pain on the sideline without immediate top end medical care is shocking.

Football is a violent game where serious injuries to players is probable at all times. But still some universities choose not to pay for an ambulance to be on site during games.

On Saturday, McGill athletic director Drew Love told the CBC’s Tanya Brikbeck that the university is going to rethink its policy on providing an ambulance for games. My question is… what is there to think about? This should be a no brainer.

Right now (as it was in 2004) schools are left to decide on their own if they want to pay to have an ambulance on site.  As a result, I’ve found that schools in the downtown core of a cities tend not to take the same precautions as schools which are located further away from a hospital emergency room.

McGill is next door to the Royal Victoria Hospital but Love said that construction on the streets near the stadium may have delayed the ambulance’s arrival.

When you’re dealing with a high collision sport like football any delay in treating a serious injury can make a significant difference to the long term health of the athlete. Top end on field care should not be optional. The players in these games are strapping on the university logo and putting everything on the line when they step on the field. Any delay is unacceptable. The players in these games deserve better.

It’s time for the CIS and the RSEQ to make on field ambulances mandatory at football games. This incident once again serves as an example that when you let institutions police themselves… they often don’t. And when services aren’t offered at the expensive of a player’s safety, it’s simply unacceptable.

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Canadian university sport could be in for a major shake up. Pierre Lafontaine takes over as the new CEO of the CIS next month.

LafontaineHave a listen to the story…

This aired on February 5, 2013

 

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The Concordia Stingers are the two time defending provincial champion – but this year it looks like if they want to win a 3rd consecutive title – they’ll have to deal with an old rival.

After a hot start McGill is nationally ranked for the first time in years.

The second half of the CIS basketball season tipped off with a hotly contested game between the Stingers and the Redmen on Thursday…

Click on the picture to take a look at the story setting up the sprint to the post-season.

web_mcgillconcordia_ja11This aired for CBC NEWS Montreal on January 11, 2012

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From the Impact’s first training camp to the NHL lockout to Georges St-Pierre’s epic fight – here it is: Montreal Sports 2012 Year In Reviewweb_montrealyearinreview_de

Click on the photo to watch the 2012 year in review. It aired for CBC NEWS Montreal on December 31, 2012

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Finally! Israeli fighter pilots and Canadian hockey players will have something to talk about the next time they sit down to shoot the breeze.

Ok… that particular situation may not come up that often…

But it is true that a computer program which was originally used for training Israel’s military could change the way we train hockey players.

Hockey Intelligym took a program made for pilots and have re-designed it for hockey. Its creators reject the idea that hockey sense is a genetic gift which can’t be improved upon or learned.

Two teams in Canada are testing out the training program and I went to see how it was working out.

Have a listen….

intelligym

This aired for CBC Daybreak Montreal on December 12, 2012

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The two time defending provincial champions Concordia Stingers basketball team were left out of the CIS preseason top ten rankings. But it hasn’t distracted players like Evens Laroche. The team expect they’ll win another title once they’re back to full health.

For more click on the photo to watch the story…

This aired for CBC NEWS Montreal on November 8th, 2012

 

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The McGill Redmen Football team will take part in an playoff game this weekend for the first time 2006. But even the team admits, they are lucky to be there.

Both the Bishop’s Gaiters and the Concordia Stingers had to forfeit games after using ineligible players. It created a ‘perfect storm’ in the RSEQ standings and vaulted McGill into 4th place.

For more… have a listen…

This aired for CBC Daybreak Montreal on October 31, 2012

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The RSEQ has stripped the Concordia Stingers of their only two victories this season after the school came forward to report the use of an ineligible player.

As a result, the Stingers record drops from 2-4 to 0-6 and eliminates the team from playoff contention.

Listen to the story which aired October 10, 2012 on CBC Daybreak Montreal for more…

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The Laval Rouge et Or haven’t lost a game in Quebec City in more than 8 years. But the 53 game home winning streak will face a major test this Sunday when the Université de Montréal Carabins come to town.

Coming into the game both teams are undefeated and in the National rankings they are neck-and-neck.

Click on the photo to watch the preview of the Laval v Montreal game which aired on October 4, 2012

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It’ll be tough for McGill to top last year’s championship season.

Ten players graduated this spring.

But Coach Kelly Nobes says McGill will still be a force in CIS hockey. Most of the recruits come from a strong hockey pedigree and the vets say last year’s victory has created a winning attitude in the locker room which will carry on.

Click on the photo to watch the preview of McGill’s 2012-13 hockey season which aired for CBC NEWS Montreal on October 3, 2012.

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