SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – With more attention focused on the long term effects of sports injuries, John Madden said studies and research need to be better organized.

“Somehow we have to put them all together,” Madden told the KCBS morning crew. “We have to share the information… have one clearinghouse for anyone who wants to use it to do research. We’re so fragmented on the research, and it’s all over the board, and you hear little pieces here and there. I’m not sure how to do this, but I would guess it has to go through government.”

When it comes to youth sports, Madden said little kids shouldn’t be playing tackle football. “I’ve always believed that kids shouldn’t play tackle football until they get to high school,” John said. “Until your bones grow together, and that’s past puberty, you shouldn’t play tackle football… Flag football is fine, soccer is good. Just run and throw and catch and do all those things.”

Madden said it’s not necessary to play tackle football in grade school to play in high school since the skills can be taught quickly.

“He doesn’t have to play in the seventh grade. He doesn’t have to play in the eighth grade. If he can play, he’s going to play,” the former coach said. (7:30)

Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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