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Does Being A College Athlete Lower Your Quality of Life?

Stashed in: Football, Young Americans

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In a word, yes:

“But the perceived quality of life is important because we determine how we function in society,” Simon says. “If we’re not happy with where we are, then that’s a problem.”

These are excellent points:

When Arizona Cardinals running back Rashard Mendenhall recently announced that he was retiring from the NFL at the relatively young age of 26, he did so because he no longer wanted to risk serious injury “for the sake of entertainment,” among other reasons. While he loves the game and appreciates the millions of dollars he earned playing it, he expressed a desire to spend more time traveling and writing, preferably with a sound body and mind.

Although some have questioned Mendenhall’s reasons for quitting his lucrative job, there’s a growing consensus that, as sportscaster Bob Costas once put it, football has become “unacceptably brutal.” After defensive back Andre Waters and linebacker Junior Seau committed suicide, for example, scientists diagnosed them both with a degenerative brain disease associated with far too many collisions to the head. Last summer, the NFLhanded out $765 million to settle a lawsuit involving thousands of retired players suffering from head injuries.

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