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Tuesday, February 5, 2013
NewsBusters' Sheppard Promotes Dubious Concussion Claim
Topic: NewsBusters

A Feb. 3 NewsBusters post by Noel Sheppard uncritically promotes a claim by sports announcer Jim Nantz that "a women's soccer player is two and a half times more likely to suffer a concussion than a college football player." Sheppard adds a whine that "America's media today for the most part seem hellbent on watering down such activities without regard to the actual statistics across the landscape of these sporting events," concluding, 'Of course, why should anyone be shocked by media members not caring about facts?"

Actually, it appears that the lack of care about facts belongs to Nantz and Sheppard. Jason Lisk at Big Lead Sports does the fact-checking that Sheppard can't be bothered to do:

He cites “research.” Is it published somewhere? If it is, I cannot find any reference to it. I’ve searched for several hours and haven’t turned up any particular study that comes close. I’ve found others that involve research on concussions in college and high school, but cannot find any that are anywhere close to this number.

Here’s what I can generally say, based on reviewing the research. Female athletes appear to be more likely to sustain concussions within the same sport as males. This is true for basketball and soccer, according to multiple sources. CBS News, in fact, the same network where this appeared, had previously reported 64% increases for soccer by women vs. their male counterparts, and 300% in women’s basketball vs. men’s basketball. (Here’s another book excerpt with similar discussions). There is also reference that women have a higher traumatic brain injury rate in car wrecks, and that is about 2.5 times more likely, the only time I can find a similar number.

Of course, why should anyone be shock by Sheppard not caring about facts?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:12 PM EST

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