2/19/21: Athlete Openness Changes The Landscape

And just like that, progress is being made.
Just got finished sharing how pro sports still doesn’t have a distinction for an athlete to take off ONE game, for “DNP – Mental Health,” & here we have a Division 1 NCAA athlete (freshman of the year, last year, & team’s top scorer this year) openly sharing that he’s taking off the remainder of the season, to treat his “mental health injury.”
Here are the words from that brave player, Noah Freidel: “After meeting with Coach Hendo and my family we’ve decided I’m not going to play for the remainder of the year as I’ve been struggling with depression and anxiety. I’m going to take this time to get healthy and work through these mental health issues. I’m so thankful to be surrounded by amazing teammates and I can’t wait to get back out on the floor with them.”
And here were the supportive words from that coach, “Hendo,” Eric Henderson: “Noah’s a full member of our team. His teammates love him, his coaches love him and our fans love him. He’s an awesome kid. How he’s involved with the team will be between me and Noah.”
Why do we feel sorry for kids/students/players who have to miss a season for an an ACL tear, but not for this? Openness like this will change that landscape. For all those who think players will take advantage of MH as an “excuse,” consider if this kid wants to be taking off after such a stellar freshman year, & start to this season.
We have Noah in our thoughts & send him well wishes. We thank him for his openness & honesty, as well as the support his team is giving him.  This is what progress looks like!

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