Shortage of high school football helmets

CLEVELAND (WJW) — High school football is just weeks away, but a shortage of helmets and shoulder pads could disrupt some schools’ seasons this fall.

With just over a week to a scrimmage, Glenville head coach Ted Ginn Sr. is scrambling to find enough helmets for his players.

“It’s really bad. We’re behind the eight ball. We don’t even have shoulder pads,” Ginn said.

Ginn said he found out a month ago that Riddell’s factory in North Ridgeville would no longer be accepting orders for new helmets or returning refurbished helmets.

His team had just picked up their refurbished helmets from last year.

“We have 48. We need about 40 more,” Ginn said.

Currently, the Tarblooders have over 70 players on the roster.

Riddell released a statement on Wednesday saying, “To ensure we are able to complete existing orders, Riddell is no longer accepting new orders for the 2022 season. Riddell will deliver all existing repacks
orders by the first week of August. Most of the new helmets and shoulder pads in our backlog will ship by the end of it
August, with the rest following shortly thereafter in September.

Ginn said some of his players buy their own headsets, while others can’t afford them. The setback comes at a time when Ginn is trying to get her athletes back on track after dealing with two years of COVID-19.

“You have to think back to school, another 20 to 30 kids might come out. I just said we’ll work it out. We can’t lose our minds. We have to find a way. It’s an obstacle that we have to cross,” Ginn said.

Glenville’s season begins Thursday, August 18.

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