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How schools, doctors manage football risks

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Eden Prairie football
Eden Prairie's 8th grade Red Bulls practiced last fall.
Photo courtesy of KARE 11 News

Football season is upon us. NFL players get the most press, but there are many more high school players on the field at any one time — and exponentially more teenagers at risk for concussions.  

But concussions may not be the only culprit in exposing football players to risk.  Recent research suggests that even apparently harmless contact may cause changes in the brains of young players. 

Despite the much-publicized concern over the dangers inherent in the sport, participation in high school football has declined only slightly. Numbers are significantly down among younger players. Coaches are trying to protect players and win games at the same time as they wait for new regulations due to take effect next year.

The Daily Circuit talks with a medical specialist and a high school football coach about what they're seeing and what they and others can do to manage the risk.