No More Headers: How U.S Soccer Is Trying To Make Youths Safer

fter a 15 month litigation process, U.S Soccer announced that a brand new series of initiatives which were designed to reduce the number of concussions soccer players suffered. This new initiative basically limits and bans heading for players under the age of 13.

The new protocol entails that children of 10 and under will be barred from heading during any official game sessions or tournaments within the country. Questions have been lauded to the administering committee on how these initiatives would be enforced in the youth level which is a widespread community. Others have mentioned that banning headers would force players to become more comfortable with their feet at a young age, which may not be a bad thing. The general consensus is that we will be seeing the improvement of the quality of players coming through the system the next few years.

Time Magazine reports that the new safety rules and guidelines is aimed at players ages 10 and younger, and players from 11- 13 years will face restrictions. U.S Soccer’s chief Medical officer George Chiampas said “What we’re establishing is creating parameters and guidelines with regards to the amount of exposure to head injuries.” Other possible changes will involve substitution rules for players who are suspected of having or showing signs of a concussion. These new rules were also developed because of parental concerns about negligence after nearly 50,000 soccer players sustained concussions in 2010.

This new initiative comes at a very pivotal time in sports medicine and history. NBC Sports reports that former U.S national team and Major League Soccer Striker Taylor Twellman, who saw his profession cut short from a series of concussions and post-concussion symptoms was one of the first notable figures in U.S soccer history to speak out and voice his approval of the new initiative. Since these new initiatives will apply to the United States Soccer Federation and Youth National Club Teams, soccer fans are unsure of whether this will drain the country of talent or make players less competitive in the international space.

Will this new initiative help or hinder U.S Soccer? I don’t think so. Putting our youth in a safe place to enjoy sporting events will eventually change how we think of health in athletics. Though European clubs and Youth Teams do not have header rules, this change could take on a global scale.

To learn more about the new initiatives to deal with concussions which stem from header goals, visit these articles by Time Magazine and NBC Sports


How Vision USA Is Helping Doctors Extend The Power Of Their Practice

Michael Holland believes in giving back to the community, and currently practices with his father who is also an optometrist. This belief came from being inspired by his own father who helped people receive treatment even when they could not afford it.  Holland reports that “he instilled in me a desire to provide service to the community.”

The AOA News provided a short review on how Dr Holland and his father are providers of Vision USA, a program of Optometry Cares – the AOA foundation. What does Vision USA do? Well it matches doctors who participate in the program with uninsured patients who need comprehensive care in their area. Since it’s inception in 1990 Vision USA has made more than 430,000 patient assignments.

here are over 2,800 optometrists who provide these services- comprehensive eye exams, to low income uninsured patients. The AOA reports that the number is also growing. This year, 108 volunteer providers joined the Vision USA network, which is a massive improvement showing the need for more volunteers in the system.

What makes Vision USA different and unlike most medical missions taken up by optometrists, is its service which is focused on US residents as its niche. How do patients qualify? Patients must have no insurance of any sort, including Medicare or Medicaid to participate in the program. They must also meet certain income requirements and will have no vision exams in the past two years, Patients must of course be U.S citizens or legal residents. Vision U.S.A currently operates in 39 states

For Dr. Holland, incorporating Vision U.S.A into his practice has proven to be a seamless measure. He estimates that he has seen up to 6 to 10 patients within the past 25 years. One of the challenges Dr. Holland faces is not knowing where his referrals come from, or how patients know about his affiliation with Vision U.S.A. Being able to trace this information back to the source could prove helpful in understanding his volunteer patients needs and how his practice can fulfill those needs.

To learn more about Vision USA and how it is helping uninsured patients, visit the Vision U.S.A site and this article by the AOA news

Rethinking The Lessons You’ve Been Taught About Entrepreneurship

The road to starting your own business is long and etched with many road bumps, failures and sacrifices. In a time where job market outlooks have changed, and people no longer see things the way they used to- go to college, get a job, work hard and make money. The idea of success has also  changed as more people wield technology as a tool to build their own business, solve problems, create change and increase their salaries.

The widespread creation and development of apps or software has led to effective change in our global communities, and even the cities we live in. Take for example Google and LinkedIn, two major tech companies whose presence in Silicon Valley has changed the demographics of the area and has also affected the  resources and access to opportunities people have to living there. Rent prices in the area have increased, but this cost of living and proximity to these companies has also improved the local schools and universities in the area.

Though we hear about the successes of Google and LinkedIn now, for their founders it did not start that way. As more entrepreneurs open themselves to the world about the price of failure and sacrifice more lessons are set for young people as they begin their own journeys to entrepreneurship.  Many people take the leap of faith, but not a lot of people know what it actually takes to become a successful entrepreneur and to actually make a profit. Below I included some of my tips on what makes someone a successful entrepreneur.

Follow your passion but don’t leave the hard work behind.

If you are passionate aboutyou do, it will never feel like work, that’s what you’ve been told. This message is applicable in many instances, but not always true to the journey of the entrepreneur. Sometimes you may not feel passionate about your work, and what you have to rely on is discipline and self mastery. These two factors are key to persevering, not just in your business life, but also in your personal life where life’s challenges will not always turn a blind eye. So the key is follow your passion, but let your work ethic lead the way. When passion fails, hard work will carry you through.

Even the “Idea Guy” needs to be organized

Becoming an entrepreneur can include so many pieces and it will be easy to become unorganized and to lose control of what you have. These days one will hear about companies where the founder primarily focuses on creating ideas and does nothing much about the execution. They key is to always stay organized. The variety of To-Do List software and organizational calendars at your disposal can help you manage your time and organize yourself.  Idea guys need to be just as organized. Plan every aspect of your business including the development and varying stages. Use your business plan as a guide and a bible to make your business as successful as it can become.

Manage Your Money, and don’t let your money manage you

Starting your own business can be very costly. When you are trying to get a business together, there can be times where you see the money just being spent without a profit coming in. At this point keep detailed records of every penny spent so when the profit does come in you know exactly what costs to recover and what will be a true profit. If possible, work with a money manager to help in this case.

To learn more about entrepreneurship and some lessons in starting your own business, visit this article by

The MLS As A Field of Retirement

We’ve seen numerous football stars hang their cleats up and call it day, diversifying their careers into coaching or business owning when their time on the field is over. Stars like David Beckham and Thierry Henry refused to do this. Instead of hanging their cleats, they transferred over to the MLS and began what it seems to be the second chapter of their soccer careers. The MLS is becoming the league for retirees to dip their feet in the water, even just one more time. Perhaps the league might not be as challenging as the English FA or Bundesliga, it still provides an avenue to generate income still doing what they love.

This article by DailyMail UK explains how Beckham who once played for LA Galaxy is close to realizing his dream of owning his own football club- the Miami MLS. He hopes to have the team running by 2018, and though the name has not been picked yet, it seems that he is closer than he has ever been in realizing this opportunity. It hasn’t been easy for Beckham, he has encountered many challenges in developing this project. Some of these challenges r Beckham has enjoyed a successful 21 year career as a soccer player. His career began at Manchester United,

As more soccer stars diversify their careers, the world focuses on Cristiano Ronaldo who has now turned down long terms rumors of his joining the MLS as part of his own retirement plan. The retirement plan rhetoric which has followed stars like Didier Drogba, Thierry Henry and the legendary Kanu Nwankwo doesn’t seem to apply to Ronaldo who was quoted last week saying-

“I’m 30 now and I’d like to keep playing for another five or six years. I know that it gets harder with age, but I believe it’s possible. As I’ve said several times before, my dream is to end my career at Real Madrid.”

Ronaldo’s decision or hopes of retiring in Real Madrid will most likely not be as challenging as David Beckham’s plan to build his own club and stadium. Ronaldo is still ranked as the number one player in the world right after Lionel Messi, and I doubt Real Madrid would want to do away with such a valuable asset. We just have to wait this out and see.

Also, how about that own goal from Van Persie this weekend? Completely heartbreaking


Best Women Soccer Players in the World

Ralph CotranSoccer is one of the most televised and loved sports in the world. Many consider it a religion, and this excitement is now more present than ever during the 2015 Women’s World Cup. Professional soccer players have an important role in keeping the high standards of the game, and continually pushing their boundaries during matches. This world cup has been especially fun to watch, which is why I have put together a list of some of my favorite players.

3. Hope Solo

The American goalkeeper is a two time Olympic gold medalist, and is considered as one of the best goalkeepers in the world. She began her career with FIFA in 2007, and has since lead the US soccer team to countless of victories against teams like Brazil and Japan. She won the Golden Glove and the Bronze Ball for her performance during the 2011 Women’s World Cup.

2.  Dzsenifer Marozsan
Dzsenifer is from Germany and began playing on the country’s national team in 2010. As one of the leaders of Germany’s women soccer team, Dzsenifer is regarded as one of the best players in the world. At only 14 years old, she was welcomed to the Bundeslega team, and was one of the youngest players to score.

1. Marta
The forward Braziliera is considered one of the best female players in the world, and is currently playing for the national team of Brazil in this year’s World Cup. She is recognized for her speed, and excellent leadership skills on the field. She received the FIFA World Cup player of the year  from 2006-2010. Marta is also one of the highest goal scorers in the world cup, and was the recipient of the Golden Ball and Golden Boot awards.

After the amazing win from the US team last night, I have included some highlights from the 2015 Women’s World Cup US- Japan final.

Best Golf Courses in the World

Ralph Cotran

Best Golf Courses in the World

The course of a long career can have its stressful moments. It’s how you handle those stress levels that ultimately bring you back to reality.  Many people enjoy a game of golf.  Why? Golf takes place outside. A golf course can be very peaceful, quiet, and a great scenic experience.  Golf is a calm sport.  There’s no running, jumping, or throwing.  It’s simply swinging a club.  Lastly, you can always arrange to play with friends, colleagues, or family members.  Its peaceful and slow enough that you can catch up on family or talk business.  However, when people ultimately retire, they look for something to do in order to pass time by all the while having fun.  Many retirees, specifically men, play a lot of golf.  Let’s take a look at some of the best retirement places overseas for golfers according to

1. Nejapa Country Club, Nicaragua

For starters, Nicaragua is one of the world’s most affordable places to retire.  The landscape is beautiful, friendly, safe and welcoming.  The Nejapa Country Club offers a great retiree residency program that many people can qualify for with a retirement income of as little as $600 a month.  It’s a par 72 course with soft bunkers and great vegetation planted throughout the area.

2. Verdura Resort, Sciacca, Italy

To those who have traveled and visited Italy, already know how beautiful Italy would be to retire.  Italy is home to one of the best golf courses in the world in Verdura Resort.  The course features fabulous views of the ocean and has year round warm weather, perfect for golfing.

Morfontaine, Paris, France

We all know Paris to be one of the most beautiful and romantic cities in the world.  Now how about retiring there with your loved one?  Designed by Englishman Tom Simpson, Morfontaine has 27 total holes including a 9 hole course and 18 hole course.  The course is covered in Scotch pines, the 18 hole course is a 6,545-yard, par-70 course.

For more information on these and other great courses, check out this article here. (

The Origins of Soccer

This presentation focusses on the origin of soccer and its rise in popularity throughout the last decades. Soccer is extremely popular among European countries and Latin America, however, its popularity in the US is slowly increasing.  This is the Newest soccer presentation via Prezi.

Syracuse Football Having Success in the Recruiting Game

Ralph Cotran

Syracuse University Football

Syracuse University football offensive coordinator George McDonald and director of recruiting Eric White have been delivering to their Twitter fans. Exclamations such as “BOOM!” and “#BeBold” have been used to announce the a new a new verbal commitment from a prospect to play football at SU, the Post-Standard reports.

These exclamation are not unwarranted apparently. So far, Syracuse has earned itself commitments from 25 recruits – the highest at this point in the recruiting cycle since the statistic started being tracking 2002. The 2015 Syracuse recruiting class is ranked 28th currently by and 43rd by Scout.  McDonald has roots in Florida and has had a great deal of success so far with securing commitments from that area, with seven players thus far. The high school football programs in that state have been shown to be strong recruiting grounds and having success there could prove invaluable for SU this season.

This influx of recruits so early in the cycle should allow the SU coaching staff to start looking ahead at 2016 and developing a long game.

The coaching staff, under the direction of McDonald, has made targeting players that fit the team’s philosophy and approach to play a top priority, and this could explain much of this early success in in recruiting.

“I think having a lot of guys on board shows the commitment that we’ve made to recruiting and recruiting the right players, but it also shows from a university standpoint that we’re doing something right and we have a lot of excitement across the country,” McDonald said.

McDonald’s excitement here is also not unwarranted. By any fair metric, Syracuse’s 7-6 finish in 2013 was quite an accomplishment for the team’s first season in the ACC combined with the fact that they were being led by a first-year coaching staff. Head coach Scott Schaffer has said that he aims to win 8 this season, a number that would certainly validate the new recruits and give credence to McDonald’s strategies.

Read more at the Post-Standard.