Toledo team doctor named to NCAA athletics safety committee

October 17, 2014 | Athletics, News
By Paul Helgren

Dr. Roger Kruse, the longtime team doctor for The University of Toledo Athletic Department, has been named to the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports.

Along with the NCAA Sports Science Institute, the committee provides leadership and expertise to assist the association in supporting all aspects of student-athlete health and safety. The committee relies on representation from member institutions in the fields of sports medicine, health and wellness, sports law, athletics administration, education and coaching, with representation from all three divisional Student Athlete Advisory Councils.

In this 2011 photo, Dr. Roger Kruse, right, tended to an injured player.

In this 2011 photo, Dr. Roger Kruse, right, tended to an injured player.

“I am very excited and humbled to be selected for this NCAA committee,” said Kruse, who has served as a team doctor at UT for 33 years, 25 years as head physician. “My goals in sports medicine have always been to increase athletic performance and prevent injuries. I look forward to working with the NCAA to make this happen.”

UT Vice President and Athletic Director Mike O’Brien said Kruse’s appointment is a positive reflection on the entire Rocket athletic program.

“This is a great honor not only for Roger, but for The University of Toledo, as well,” O’Brien said. “There is nothing more important than the safety and welfare of our student-athletes. Roger will do a great job providing the perspective that only someone with his experience and expertise can offer. He is a perfect example of the kind of national reputation for leadership you will find throughout our great university.”

In addition to private practice and his responsibilities at UT, where he also is a clinical assistant professor of family medicine, Kruse is a drug crew chief for the U.S. Olympic Committee, and served in the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, 1998 Winter Olympic Games in Nagano, and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. He was the head physician for the United States Olympic Team in Nagano.

Kruse also has been in charge of drug testing at many major national and international events. He has served as drug crew chief for the Boston and New York marathons, and track and field during the 1996 Summer Olympic Games. He also served as the director of sports science for the United States Figure Skating Association and is in charge of all figure skating camps at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. His field of expertise is performance enhancement programs and he writes many of the programs for the Olympic figure skaters.

According to the NCAA’s website, there are 20 members of the committee. Kruse is one of three members of the Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports, which must come from the field of medicine. The committee is charged with the following duties:

• Promote and sponsor research to address relevant health and safety issues;

• Advance education to enhance the health and safety of student-athletes;

• Operate a national injury surveillance program to monitor injury trends and enhance safety in intercollegiate athletics;

• Deter the use of NCAA banned substances in order to promote fair competition and safety;

• Facilitate outreach activities to enhance student-athlete health and safety; and

• Provide a health and safety perspective on relevant legislation and policy.

The Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports has two subcommittees, the Drug-Education and Drug-Testing Subcommittee, and the Sports Sciences Safety Subcommittee. The Drug-Education and Drug-Testing Subcommittee provides the NCAA membership direction on alcohol, tobacco and other drug abuse prevention programs, research and grants, and oversees the NCAA drug-testing program. This committee is charged with hearing drug-test appeals. The Sports Sciences Safety Subcommittee provides guidance on sports specific health and safety research and policy issues. This subcommittee also edits the NCAA Sports Medicine Handbook. All subcommittee recommendations are reviewed for approval by the full committee.

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