Ondre Pipkins Suffers Neck Injury, Hospitalized For Precautionary Reasons

Submitted by Ace on August 17th, 2012 at 10:07 AM

News broke earlier this morning that a Huron Valley Ambulance had been dispatched to Schembechler Hall for a potential spinal injury. It appears freshman defensive tackle Ondre Pipkins was the player in question, according to a short press statement from the athletic department:

Brady Hoke Statement on Ondre Pipkins
Ondre injured his neck during practice this morning. He had movement
in all extremities and was taken to U-M Health System for
precautionary reasons and evaluation.

In a case like this, it's obviously very good news that Pipkins has movement in his extremities. This story will be updated as more news comes out. For now, keep Ondre in your thoughts and prayers; let's hope this is all just precautionary and there's no serious injury.

UPDATE: A couple more details from AnnArbor.com's Kyle Feldscher, who was the first to report about the injury:



August 17th, 2012 at 10:09 AM ^

Hopefully he'll be feeling good and back on track after taking any necessary medical precautions. He'll be in my thoughts today and this weekend. Here's to a speedy and complete recovery for Mr. Pipkins!

Eck Sentrik

August 17th, 2012 at 10:18 AM ^

Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger. Please be just a stinger.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:32 AM ^

very little chance that this is something that can just be shaken off quickly.  Really, when you talk neck injury and hospital, there are two kinds of injuries, the bad ones and the tragic ones.  Fortunately for everybody, this seems to be only a bad one where he will likely retain total use of everything and more than likely return to the field after a substantial recovery.  For now, the fact that he is moving everything is the good news to be taken out of this.  But I don't think you will be hearing an all clear any time soon as far as football goes.  It is terrible news for Ondre and for Michigan fans, but at least it looks like the kid is going to be alright.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:44 AM ^

I don't think we know enough to say right now.  I've been taken away from a car crash on a board with my head strapped down and the whole nine yards when all I had was whiplash.  I was sore for a month or so, but that was it.  I didn't have an injury to my spinal cord at all.  Pipkins may be able to bounce back pretty soon. 


August 17th, 2012 at 10:46 AM ^

Are you a doctor? I played DE in HS and sustained a concussion and was blacked out on the field and they took me to the hospital in an ambulance because they were worried I had fractured my neck, as it turned out I was fine and started practicing again after 2.5 weeks.


August 17th, 2012 at 11:04 AM ^

I agree, I am just glad he is moving, I had a sick feeling earlier but it sounds like football or not he is going to be fine.  While it doesn't matter in the big picture, there is a fair chance that it isn't nearly as serious as you think and he could end up back on the field in a few weeks.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:57 AM ^

C'mon.  So many variations.  Have to take it seriously and if your knocked out or get a really bad stinger the first-responders will always be uber safe and get you to the hospital for additional monitoring/imaging whatever.  

a non emu

August 17th, 2012 at 11:05 AM ^

This is pretty misleading. I actually think a lot of neck/spinal trips to the hospital are in fact precautionary. You want to err on the side of caution because of the potentially devastating consequences of a bad neck injury. For instance, my friends and I went skiing for the first time. One guy lost control ended up hurtling down the slope and crashed at full speed into an instructor at the bottom from behind. It looked pretty bad, and they carried her out strapped to a board and everything to a hospital. Turned out she just got the wind knocked out of her, and was back on the slopes the next day.

Happy ending, but my friend never skied again :)


August 17th, 2012 at 11:28 AM ^


In fact most neck injuries are minor.  The catastropic injuries are EXTREMELY rare, but they receive the most news coverage.  Greater than 90% of football neck injuries are minor.  However, as a surgeon, if a player complains of significant neck pain after a hit, he is immoblized, boarded, and sent in for xrays, and maybe a CT.  Like they said PRECAUTIONARY.  Don't spread fear and false information if you don't know what you're talking about.  At this point NONE OF US KNOW WHAT HAPPENED.  Therefore any speculation is worthless.  The statistics and research support that most likely it's a minor injury and he may very well have a quick and complete recovery.  We will know soon enough.

Take if from an orthopaedic surgeon, sports medicine.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:20 AM ^

Incredibly happy to learn that he is moving all extremeties.  You've got one of the best Hospital systems in the world to get you through this Ondre, hopefully everything works out for the best!


August 17th, 2012 at 10:21 AM ^

Pipkins was on a list of guys that I absolutely was dreading (more than others but still never want it to happen to anyone regardless if they play for Michigan or not).  He has been playing excellent and we need him for depth purposes.  I hope he makes a speedy recovery and the team stays healthy the rest of the season!

Praying for you Big PeeWee Pipkins!


August 17th, 2012 at 10:25 AM ^

I wonder if this might pull back the physicality of practice.  In general, I bet it's hard for Hoke to balance a physical camp with looking out for the safety of his players. 


August 17th, 2012 at 10:38 AM ^

I don't know, man. Hoke preaches physicality and toughness. Those are two of the top top characteristics he wants in his team. I feel like Hoke would say something along the lines of "that's not Michigan football" if he had to dial back the physicality. It's not like any of us were there to see the injury so we don't know how the injury happened. Injuries do happen in sports. It sucks.

I'm glad that Peewee seems to be alright. 


August 17th, 2012 at 10:25 AM ^

His health is the primary focus.  Football is secondary to his return to full mobility and moving forward in life.

Then kicking the crap out of opponents when he returns.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:27 AM ^

I bet when you dominate in high school -- then find yourself up against players who are stonger and more physical than you've ever seen -- you have a tendency to over-hit, or amp up your motor beyond what you're used to. God I hope he's ok.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:28 AM ^

He's in our thoughts. A spinal injury is obviously devastating for anyone, but especially someone who would make their living with their body. 

turd ferguson

August 17th, 2012 at 10:48 AM ^

Excellent news.

I'm glad that I just came to this story now.  A Twitter-centric news media is nice in some ways, but with stories like this, I think it's more of a curse than a blessing.  It'd be nice if reporters had time to collect and organize some information instead of feeling pressured to release every tidbit the moment they acquire it.


August 17th, 2012 at 10:58 AM ^

Thank god he's ok at least life-wise if not football-wise. Kid works that hard his whole life to get himself in the perfect position and that happens, damn shame. Hopefully nothin but positives from here on out. For him and Wormley both.


August 17th, 2012 at 11:05 AM ^

How about this for a depressing start to a Friday: First Pipkins hurt. I'm home today with the kids, and by god what's on the B1G network? Purdue vs Western Michigan with Pam Ward on the mic. It's also raining outside.


August 17th, 2012 at 11:06 AM ^

To whomever swooped in and did some serious modding, thank you.

Everyone, this is a great time to post any well-wishes for Ondre. This is not a great time to debate the merits of prayer, cyber-diagnose his injury, or try to figure out if Hoke is practicing the players too hard (good lord, people, it's football—these things, unfortunately, happen). Please maintain decency or we'll have to just lock the comments.


August 17th, 2012 at 11:21 AM ^

Hope it's nothing serious and wishing him a speedy recovery. That's a hell of a way to start college. I'm sure Hoke and the SC coaches won't mind if PeeWee cheats a bit from his diet and helps himself to a little hospital soft-serve ice cream in the meantime.


August 17th, 2012 at 11:29 AM ^

Sparty also provides their best wishes at RCMB:

The UM kid sprained his neck while killing a few hookers in his dorm room. Seriously, I hope he's okay. At least they could quickly get him to a top notch medical facility.