By Jaycob Payne Introduction to Journalism Student April 10, 2018
Concussions have been a rising topic recently among the sports world. They are a serious condition and should not be taken lightly. At what point is enough, really enough?
Mac Skogen, a “hometown hero” from Mason City, played four sports throughout his high school career for the Mohawks. Throughout his time as a Mohawk, Mac suffered from three concussions. Each time, Mac took the correct protocols before returning to action. A lot of serious injuries happen when athletes come back too soon and aren’t fully recovered.
“I always felt like I was ready to come back. As an athlete, you need to be honest with how you feel, so you don’t sustain a more serious injury,” said Mac.
Mac was a standout athlete in basketball and decided to continue playing for the North Iowa Area Community College (NIACC) Trojans.
“Entering the year, I felt 100% and was not concerned about my head injuries from high schools,” commented Mac about heading into the 2017-2018 season.
On Wednesday, January 24, the NIACC Trojans had a home against the Ellsworth Panthers. During the game, Mac suffered from his first post high school concussion. “I was sliding over to take a charge. Then, I took an elbow to the head and don’t remember much after that,” said Mac.
There was quite a delay in the game before the sports trainer got Mac removed from the court after he went down. “I saw him go down, and after that, it didn’t really seem like he knew where he was at,” Kaleb Anderson, Mac’s teammate, said.
Mac followed the correct steps to be able to return to play as quickly as possible. When he could finally return, it wasn’t even five minutes of play when he got hit in the head again. He had more signs and symptoms of another concussion, so he removed himself from the game.
Mac and his parents then decided to sit out the rest of the season to protect him from more serious head injuries.
Losing Mac for the season was quite negative for the Trojans. “Mac was a hard worker, making a lot of tough plays, diving on the floor, grabbing rebounds, and making smart basketball plays,” said Chris Davis, assistant coach for the Trojans.
Even though the Trojans were a better team with Mac on the court, he had to look at what was best for him. At the end of the day, it is just a game. Concussions are a harmful condition that should be prevented at all costs. Eventually, an athlete might need to ask if the risks of a concussion are worth playing.