Sports Law • Risk Management


Lacrosse: Contact Sport?

Even though I have seen men’s professional lacrosse before, this weekend I witnessed my first collegiate women’s lacrosse game. According to US Lacrosse, in the United States the sport is the both the oldest and the fastest growing at both the high school and collegiate level. I recently learned that men’s lacrosse is a contact sport, while women’s lacrosse is a non-contact sport. Thus, there are different rules and protective equipment requirements depending on whether it is men or women playing.

Here are some of the differences between men’s and women’s lacrosse:

No Love for Sexual Misconduct

Colby College just finished its investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct committed by fifteen of its students. Although for privacy reasons Colby College has disclosed little information, according to The Colby Echo’s article on February 8th, it is believed that football players were spying through a window to watch their teammate receive oral sex from a female student. Although the act of voyeurism did not amount to any criminal charges, the college concluded that the school’s sexual misconduct policy was violated.

NCAA New Rule Regarding Pole Vault Helmets

Not so long ago a pole vaulter who wished to use protective headgear had few options. Vaulters resorted to wearing equipment, such as skating helmets, that were neither tested nor specifically recommended for use in pole vaulting. However, over the last decade there has been increasing concern and discussion about creating standardized pole vaulting headgear in order to minimize head injuries and to prevent the death of athletes’ who hit their head during a vault. Such widespread concern for pole vaulters’ safety has prompted some significant changes in the last five years.

November 14, 2010: Playing with Injuries---When should an Athlete Stop?

Boxer Antonio Margarito faces surgery for his fractured eye socket after a beating by Manny Pacquiao on Saturday night. Margarito, a Mexican super welterweight, after losing the 12-round decision was taken by ambulance to a local hospital immediately after the fight for the WBC junior middleweight title held at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. After an array of punches, Margarito’s face was bloodied with cuts on his face and eye. It was reported that a congressman from the Philippines requested the referee to stop the fight.

September 29, 2010: Triathlon Risk Management: Part II---Cycling

While chatting with JJ Johnson, a certified USAT coach at Starbuck’s yesterday, I introduced him to our website and we discussed safety issues in sports. Since I’m the Regional Officials Coordinator for USAT for Hawaii, JJ often asks me about issues relating to the USAT Competitive Rules. We discussed our amazement that so many triathletes claim that they do not know or understand the rules. This seems absurd as athletes in every other sport---football, basketball, baseball, golf, and tennis---seem to be well aware of their sport’s rules. Why should triathlon be any different?

September 6, 2010: Pulling An Early Yellow Card

While watching a college soccer match earlier today I was reminded of the importance of having a strong head official. I watched one team play dirty because they were clearly outmatched by the technical footwork of their opponents. The head referee set the tone of intolerance against dirty playing early in the game by giving out a yellow card within the first several minutes of play. Furthermore, he was consistent in his calls throughout the match.