Leave it to a group of intellectuals to make a case why football should be banned.

Fitchburg State University hosted a panel on why football should be banned. Not one football coach was asked to join the table and discuss the benefits of the game.

Not one player, current or former, was asked to describe the positive impact the game has had on their lives.

Just those who absorb the studies into head injuries in the sport.

Football leagues at all levels have done a great job at making the game safer with institution of new protocol that requires players to step off the field if their helmet happens to become dislodged. Once cleared by coaches, who have to pass a concussion certification test, the player may return to play.

Ah, yes, the hot button issue about the increasing number of concussions in the sport and their after effects.

It’s an inherent risk you take the moment you step on the field. Anything can happen once you cross onto the gridiron from sustaining a concussion to walking off the field with a headful of pride.

Let’s face it, sports are dangerous. Not just football, all sports. Standing in the batter’s box and taking a fastball to the side of the head can also cause a concussion, but there isn’t a witch hunt to end the sport like there is for football.

While awareness to the concussion issue in the sport is necessary, banning the game altogether is absolutely absurd.

It is a sport that teaches camaraderie and teamwork. The will to push through when the odds, and yes, sometimes the pain and fatigue, seem unbearable.

Football is a sport that makes men out of teenage boys. Sure, it is a dangerous sport, but every sport has its dangers.In lacrosse, players take vicious whips from defenders with a metal stick shaft … ouch, sounds painful, but nobody is trying to ban that.

Then there is the game of hockey, pucks whizzing around from all directions and yes, open ice hits. Hockey has also taken great measures to improve the safety of the game.

Take the look-up line, which was created by a former amateur hockey player who sustained a spinal cord injury when he barreled into the boards headfirst.

The Groton School rink has the orange ring painted around its rink.

Concussions are not fun … I have experienced them. Chances are, anyone who has played sports has had at least one in their lifetime.

While the chances of getting a concussion are scientifically much higher in football, nothing is absolutely safe. One can get a concussion in a multitude of ways.

It is when people start to feed into the mainstream sentiment that football is an outdated barbaric sport that needs to go.In its infancy, football players donned leather helmets and had very little padding. Now, the average football player straps on roughly 15 pounds of equipment each time they take the field.

Sometimes players get lazy and bow their head. It is still ingrained in my mind to keep my eyes up at all times or get hurt. My old coach used to drill that into our heads well before the concussion witch hunt began.

Concussions do not only occur in football. They can happen in car accidents, when people slip and fall in the tub … anywhere.

Banning football is not the answer, furthering the education of athletic trainers and coaches across all sports about diagnosing concussions is.

Football is here to stay, so long as the money is talking and the pads are popping.