by Irvin Muchnick
Charlotte Carroll, author of the inaccurate August story at SI.com — online arm of Sports Illustrated — about the conditioning drill death of Garden City Community College football player Braeden Bradforth, says she will “update” the information there on cause of death.
Relying only on a misleading and self-serving quote from head coach Jeff Sims, who has moved on to Missouri Southern State University, Carroll had left the impression that Bradforth died of a blood clot.
The autopsy two weeks ago confirmed that it was actually exertional heat stroke. In a contemporaneous emergency medical services report obtained this week by Concussion Inc., paramedics say Bradforth was found drenched in water, and the Garden City CC coaching staff told them that they had the stricken, moaning, unresponsive 19-year-old soaked with a hose prior to the 911 call.
Writer Carroll told Jill Greene, the lawyer for Bradforth’s mother Joanne Atkins-Ingram, that her failure to respond earlier to multiple messages was due to her being on vacation. “I’ll update our original story accordingly,” Carroll said in an email.
The Carroll-to-Greene email was transmitted at 3:05 p.m. Eastern time. Internet time stamps show that this was certainly less than an hour, and possibly as few as three minutes, after I tweeted the following:
Sports Illustrated (@SInow) doesn’t seem to want to explain why it won’t bother to help the truth catch up with the lie by Garden City Community College football coach Jeff Sims, about the cause of conditioning death of Braeden Bradforth, as transcribed in SI’s August coverage.
Later today at https://concussioninc.net we’ll review the outdated and erroneous record @SInow created of the cause of Garden City CC football player Braeden Bradforth’s August 1 conditioning death. It was exertional heat stroke, not coach Jeff Sims’ promoted “blood clot.”
(Sports Illustrated’s managing editor, Chris Stone, and the Time Inc. media relations department, along with Carroll, did not respond to our two emailed queries over the last 36 hours. Wherever Stone is, he does not seem to be on vacation: his own Twitter feed shows him sounding off on other subjects.)
SI’s evident insouciance regarding coverage of a mere death constitutes less than sterling journalistic practice. Let me also say that more is in order here than a buried “update”; what’s needed is a fresh and engaged new story with more prominent play than the original bad one. But I’m glad Carroll and SI are taking at least a baby step toward correcting the public record.
DEATH OF BRAEDEN BRADFORTH — CHRONOLOGICAL HEADLINE LINKS