Noted excellent author and horrible pun enthusiast Adam Jacobi has a piece up over at BHGP discussing dead-at-27 former Iowa Safety Tyler Sash's recent diagnosis with CTE.
The diagnosis is, sadly, no surprise. Sash's fall after football was swift and pronounced, and his arrest in 2014 typified the erratic behavior of those suffering from the disease. Its advancement in his young age, however, is more of a surprise, if only because researchers said they had only seen one other similar case.
Sash's death isn't a problem specific to Iowa football, of course. The University of Iowa was Sash's home for just four of his 16 years of playing football, and as Marc Morehouse wrote in 2014, the University of Iowa has a substantial, multifaceted concussion protocol. There's no reason to think the school came up short in its medical treatment of Sash.
That shouldn't reassure you; it should terrify you. Tyler Sash's life and death as a football player aren't an aberration from protocol; they are part of the protocol. Football killed Tyler Sash.
I agree with Jacobi's premise that other sports have often struggled with the danger they impose - his NASCAR description is apt. As hockey discusses banning fighting, I think the answer is they must. Sorry to share a downer, but this is well done and quite the rejoiner to Harbaugh's "Football is worth it" piece from earlier this year.