New rules to change football play in Mich. high schools

New rules to change football play in Mich. high schools

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ST. CLAIR SHORES, Mich. (WJBK) - Big changes are coming to schools here in metro Detroit and all over Michigan. New rules will change the way football is played on high school fields across the state.

Rob Wozniak is the head football coach at Lakeview High School and is teaching his kids the proper technique to tackle, avoiding big collisions using the head. It's safer - and now it's mandatory.

The new rules are designed to curb concussions and keep kids safe on the field.

"As coaches we've talked for years how to make the game safer, how to tackle better, how to tackle safer, and make the rules adaptable for your kids. It's an easy thing to do. It's the rules, we're going to follow them, we're going to make sure our kids are safe. I want to make sure our kids are doing things the right way," Wozniak says.

In an attempt to lower the number of collisions during the season, the state of Michigan, like California and Texas before it, have limited the number of full-contact practices a team is allowed to have during the season to twice per week.

"We're going to change what we do. We're going to change how our practices are going to run. They're going to be up tempo, we're going to be go, go, go, go, go. The kids, so far, have bought in. They're not happy about it, you know, they want to hit every day," says Wozniak.

The Michigan High School Athletic Association is giving each school and coach a safety blitz pamphlet.

They key now is how it will be enforced.

"I've set an expectation with my coaching staff that all these heat index rules and the football contact rules are going to be followed to a tee. There's not a question, there's no exceptions or gray areas and that's what's going to be expected here. I would hope that every other school district in the state that has football will be following the same rules as well," says Lakeview's Director of Athletics Sean Zaborowski.
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