Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tim Tebow Shouldn't Play: The Debate Is On

The "Tim Tebow shouldn't play" (against LSU) meme is going mainstream today.

It has been interesting to watch the progression: From "Can he play?" to "Will he play?" to "Should he play?" (I have a big take on this coming later on Yahoo -- will post here.)

Since Sunday, I have been clear that that is my opinion -- and I'm not alone:

Over the weekend, EDSBS's Orson Swindle got right out in front.

Yesterday, CBSSports.com's Gregg Doyel chimed in (even if I didn't like the premise of his argument, I agreed with the larger point).

And overnight, the AP's Jim Litke weighed in with a well-reported, well-reasoned column supporting Tebow not playing; the risks -- more accurately, the unknowns -- are just too great.

(Even the Huffington Post got in on it, through contributor Dr. Johnny Benjamin, reinforcing that what we -- what doctors -- know about brain science is still too iffy to risk it.)

Capping it all was a front-page story in today's New York Times, about a new study that shows that NFL players -- and by extension, high-level college football players -- are vastly more likely to develop conditions like dementia than the average person.

Now, that might seem obvious, but only 4 days into Tebow's post-concussion life (wow: has it only been 4 days? feels like 4 weeks), it seems entirely relevant to the discussion.

As I will explain at length shortly, the big question of the next 11 days isn't whether or not Tebow CAN play against LSU. But whether or not he SHOULD play.

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