Most of the combines put on by Nike, Under Armour and National Underclassmen are designed to limit contact between players. They are, after all, combines designed mostly to test high school athletes and get a gauge their skills on the field. Sometimes however, there is a bit of contact and in a few cases, serious injury.
The Washington Post reported that wide receiver Lamont Baldwin, a junior at Carroll High, B.J. Antoine of Eleanor Roosevelt High and Demery Monroe of DeMatha, were taken by ambulance to local hospitals after a collision. Antoine and Monroe were treated and released but Baldwin stayed hospitalized with a head injury. The collision occured at the Northern Virginia Riddell All-American Training Camp Elite Skills and Lineman Showcase at the Dulles Sportsplex near Washington, D.C.
The 6-foot-3, 195 pound Baldwin was flown via helicopter to a local hospital. He ended up spending two days in intensive care and is still receiving treatment for a fractured skull and a severe concussion.
“I’ve been doing this a long time and seen some crazy injuries, but I have never seen anything scare me this much,” Baldwin's coach, Rick Houchens, told the paper. “I feared for the kid’s life.”
Houchens also told the paper that a neurologist expects Baldwin to make a full recovery from the injuries and will be able to play football again. The neurologist cautioned that it could take six months to fully recovery however.
According to the Post:
The injuries occurred about two hours into the four-hour camp, during one-on-one drills, with a quarterback throwing to a wide receiver being covered by a defensive back. To try to maximize participation, the players were divided into two groups, each lining up at one end of the field and running pass patterns toward the middle of the field.
Houchens, who went to the camp as a spectator, said Baldwin lined up for a play while being covered by Antoine. Baldwin ran about 10 yards straight ahead, then broke off on a 45-degree angle, Houchens said. At the same time, from the other end of the field, Monroe was covering a wide receiver, with the four players on a collision course.
“You don’t do that, you never run any kind of drill into each other,” said Houchens, noting that there were close calls before the injuries occurred. “There is too much risk.”
Miami, North Carolina, Georgia Tech, Tennessee, Maryland and Pittsburgh are some of the schools showing interest in Baldwin. Cases such as this reinforce that football is a contact sport and that even at camps or combines, the risk of injury is still present. Hopefully, Baldwin is able to make a full recovery quicker than what is expected.