On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldmanspeaks with Coach George Hero, the legendary coach and founder of the MidwoodHigh School wrestling team in Brooklyn, New York.
At MidwoodMania III on April 21, the 54-year-old Coach Hero returned to the matonce again and scored a third-period pin over an opponent three decades hisjunior, former NYU wrestler and current high school coach Mark Shirian. Wespoke with Coach Hero right after his victory.
We open with commentary on the suicide this past week of former NFL starlinebacker Junior Seau. Just 43 years old, he was found dead of a self-inflictedgunshot wound to the chest. The actual reasons for his suicide are not known atthis time. However, according to news reports, his family has agreed to donatehis brain to researchers who are studying the links between blows to the headin contact and combat sports, concussions, and the degenerative brain diseaseCTE, chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
With more of these tragedies and suicides of former athletes in contact andcombat sports becoming publicly known, and with the science of understandingwhat head blows do to the brain becoming more precise, what will this mean inyears to come for these sports? We lay out some historical analogies to howdueling and smoking have become socially unacceptable and even banned in wholeor in part, and ask if these may provide clues as to the future prospects ofthese sports. We also note how the combat sports without striking, such as thevarious styles of grappling and wrestling, need to promote themselves better inlight of what may happen to these other sports.
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The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", by IanCarpenter (http://iancarpenter.com).
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