MSU Baseline Testing Meets New NCAA Guidelines

The NCAA decided earlier this week to tackled the issue of concussions among college athletes by changing what happens immediately to a player who may have suffered one.

The $70 million settlement will mostly be spent monitoring present and past players who might have suffered a concussion while playing college sports.

The agreement also mandates baseline concussion testing for student-athletes.

It's a form of testing already being used at Midwestern State University.

MSU Head Athletic Trainer Gary Diehm says it's another tool in ensuring a student's well-being after a head injury.

"I think we have been ahead of the curve as far as MSU is concerned and I think more and more schools are getting on board doing the baseline training," Diehm says. 

Also, Diehm says they do an initial ImPACT pretest, a computer based cognitive test, to find out where their injury baseline is as far as concussions go.

"Once they sustain a concussion, then we have that baseline we can refer back to and we compare their original results to the results after the injury," Diehm says. 

We wanted to know how it works so I took the 45 minute test which goes over memory, speed, reaction time and impulse control.

Diehm says they don't just go off the test results because every athlete may experience different concussion symptoms.

"It's important to talk to the athlete and understand what their injury is but this is also one of the tools in your toolbox to look at and say, 'OK, you aren't ready to go back. You're not healthy yet. You're brain has not fully healed.'

The NCAA settlement also states athletes must be immediately pulled from the game until they can determine that they either have a concussion or don't.

All players, coaches and trainers will receive concussion education and doctors trained in concussion diagnosis must be present for all games played in contact sports such as football, soccer and basketball.

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