Report here from AP, says a new study put out by our friends at Iowa State (Moo U) shows Iowa high school players beefing up, even to the point of obesity. Study to be published in JAMA.
This presents all kinds of health problems from diabetes to risk of cardiac disease. Many of these problems will not be evidence until years later for these athletes.
Researchers at Iowa State University found nearly half of the offensive and defensive linemen playing on Iowa high school teams qualify as overweight, and one in 10 meet medical standards for severe obesity...
For years at the pro and college level, teams have sought bigger, stronger linemen who are harder to budge. Players have responded by adding weight and muscle mass, making the 300-pound lineman fairly common, sports medical experts said.
Recently, however, the National Football League and players have taken greater note of health risks for heavy athletes because of two high-profile NFL player deaths and a 2005 study, which concluded that 56 percent of NFL players fit medical standards for obesity.
The size, bulk and ever-widening girth of the pros apparently has not gone unnoticed by those dreaming of one day playing at the next level.
"Sure I look at college players and pro players a lot and size them up," said Chad Wilson, a junior who started at center last season for Iowa City West High School. He wants to add at least another 20 pounds before next season.
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Pressure to get bigger, stronger, heavier may
come from parents and coaches, but there is also a desire from within,
"You want to have the weight to be able to compete in the conference we're in," said Thomas Reynolds, a junior linebacker hoping to switch to the defensive line next season.
The study's researchers began by gathering height and weight data of 3,686 varsity linemen available from rosters from all classes of Iowa high school football teams. They used that data to calculate a body-mass index, the same tool used for the NFL study.
Of the players analyzed, 28 percent were deemed at risk of being overweight and 45 percent fit the standards for being overweight, including 9 percent who met adult severe obesity standards...
Health experts also said the results are no surprise in a society dealing with high rates of child and adolescent obesity. Overweight children and teens face higher risks for heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and weight problems through adulthood.
The SportsPickle has a parody, which we hope isn't true:
Philadelphia Eagles representatives admitted today that they hope 395-pound defensive tackle Willis Duncan will die of heatstroke during training camp in order to open up a roster spot for a player who could potentially address the team’s shortcomings at other positions.