Ralph Nader’s ‘League of Fans’ Calls for Youth Concussion Testing

Introducing the Concussion Research of Clinical Psychologist Don Brady
August 25, 2011
How Did Ric Flair Fall Through the Cracks of WWE’s ‘Wellness Policy’ Cardio Screening?
August 29, 2011

A new Ralph Nader group called League of Fans – saying the sports world “must open eyes to compelling concussion research” – has called for mandatory neurocognitive testing for youth athletes. See http://leagueoffans.org/pdf/Manifesto5.pdf.

Nader is something of a designated national scold, and I’m not sure how warmly the “fan base,” as they say, will embrace his appropriation of it. But let’s say this: as a public-interest organization, the League of Fans is a big improvement over the “Sports Fans Coalition.” The latter seems most interested in hobnobbing with the biggest hot-air bags in Washington, such as Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut (who finds the burning issue of TV blackouts of home-team football games more urgent than meaningful steps for the health of young athletes).

(At the bottom of this post are links to my items that have been critical of the Sports Fans Coalition.)

As for this proposal by the League of Fans for something called the King-Devick Concussion Test, I am interested in what experts, such as Dustin Fink of the Concussion Blog, will have to say. I need to learn a lot more about King-Devick and how it might improve upon the seriously flawed ImPACT system of the National Football League and World Wrestling Entertainment’s corrupt Dr. Joseph Maroon. There is reason to be skeptical about the entire category of neuropsychological (NP) testing, but a national standard, starting with very young athletes, is perhaps less likely to be “gamed” and cheated than the top-down ImPACT.

Above all, it’s good to see Nader and company elevating the national concussion discussion.



Irv Muchnick



‘Sports Fans Coalition Working With Sen. Blumenthal on NFL TV Blackouts AND Concussions.’ Discuss.


Paging Senator Blumenthal – Who Accepts NFL Campaign Contributions – On His Work With the Sports Fans Coalition


Sports Fans Coalition’s ‘Agenda’ Doesn’t Say One Word About Public Health


‘NFL Fans Should Worry About More Than One Kind of “Blackout”‘ (full text)


1 Comment

  1. Dave Pear says:

    Dear De Smith,

    The Bell/Rozelle disability board members who vote on disability claims consists of conflicts of interest and unqualified boards members. This is another reason why a US Department of Labor audit is necessary.

    Voting Board Members

    1) Tom Condon is super agent for top draft picks and Gene Upshaw ( former Executive Director of the NFLPA).
    How did Tom Condon vote when his clients came before the board when applying for disability?
    Also, he not qualified to vote because this is beyond his expertise.
    ALL of Mr. Condon’s past votes should be reviewed by the US department of labor because this is a gross conflict of interest as was his being an agent for Gene . Upshaw.
    2) Dave Duerson was severely brain damages and was not qualified to vote on disability claims.
    3) Sam McCullum refers to himself as Duerson’s replacement on the disability review board. Sam has no medical training and is not qualified. Sam has been corrected numerous times by disability attorney John Hogan on his misunderstanding of the CBA. Sam claims that it can’t be changed for 10 years. However, that is incorrect because it can be changed immediately. Remember when Gene Upshaw was proven wrong in The Washington Post Magazine on Super Bowl Sunday February 3, 2008 by Michael Leahey. For 25 years Upshaw used his sinister discretion claiming “its the law” but his own attorney Lanny Davis corrected him. (Magazine section pg. 26 par. 6-7). Then Upshaw and NFL attorney Harold Henderson made a change in order to save face but also signed a back room dirty deal that eliminated retroactive disability benefits for some retired players. Writer Michael Leahy thought these disabled players would receive full disability but that was NOT the case!
    4) Jeff Van Note is employed by the Atlanta Falcons as an announcer. This is a conflict of interest and he is not qualified to vote.
    5) Robert Smith works for NFL Network as an analyst and has appeared on The Score to discuss the NFL. This is another conflict of interest and he in not qualified to make medical decisions for disabled retired players.

    The conclusion is, there must be a conflict of interest, brain damage or you must have no medical or vocational training in order to be qualified as a voting member on the Bell/Rozelle Disability board. This makes absolutely no sense and violates ERISA Law.

    Dave & Heidi Pear
    Pro Bowl 1978
    Super Bowl XV
    Social Security Disability 2004

Concussion Inc. - Author Irvin Muchnick