Huffpost High School

Rich Piccinini, PA High School Football Coach, Investigated By Local Police

Posted: Updated:

For some teenage athletes, nothing will stop them from playing the game they love -- not even a concussion. High school athletes who experience concussions during training or competition often make matters worse by returning to practice too soon after they're injured. But for one Pennsylvania team, the question of dealing with concussions has taken a different tone. The team's coach was investigated for allegedly pressuring players to continue playing despite possible injuries.

After receiving a complaint from the Washington County Children and Youth Services that the coach was interfering with in-game medical treatment of players who with concussions or concussion-like symptoms, the Peters police department began investigating the Peters Township High School football program and the team's coach, Rich Piccinini, last Thursday.

The investigation has been closed, and superintendent Nina Zetty said that students with medical releases are now playing again and the team is getting ready for next season.

"We know that this has been a very difficult time for Coach Piccinini, and the district offers its continued support to him and his team in moving this program forward," she said in a press conference today.

Every season, 20 percent of high school football players experience concussions and many are not given adequate time to heal after the injury. To address this concern, 32 states have enacted concussion laws to protect young athletes, often requiring that athletes stop practicing and competing as soon as symptoms arise.

Do know any student athletes who have been pressured to practice before they've recovered from injuries? Share your thoughts in the comments below.