College and University

Creighton staff, faculty provide medical assist for visiting CWS teams


Article reposted from Creighton University
Author: Creighton University

As hosts of the NCAA® Men’s College World Series®, Creighton University does its best to ensure teams, fans and officials play and enjoy the old ballgame in a friendly and exciting atmosphere.

Some Creighton faculty and staff volunteers go so far to see that in all the fun, nobody goes home hurt. While each team travels with its own athletic training and medical staff, Creighton practitioners are helping provide a full-throated — if often behind-the-scenes — response to various needs.

For the past 10 years, Curtis Self, MA, ATC, the athletic trainer for Creighton’s baseball team, has served as the medical coordinator at the CWS, organizing the sports medicine volunteers who flock each year to the event. Athletic trainers, orthopedic surgeons, internal medicine physicians, chiropractors and rehabilitation experts from across the country converge on Omaha to contribute to an effort that Self says leaves the players, coaches and team medical staffs with only one concern: winning ballgames.

“We take care of any needs that might have and we’ve seen the full gamut over the years,” Self said. “It’s a whirlwind to get here and play in a national championship, so we see our job as doing whatever we can to make sure everything is taken care of, across the spectrum. We’re here to help players, coaches, the team medical staff, NCAA officials, umpires, CWS Inc. officials, you name it. Anything we can do to make sure they are taken care of and can concentrate on the games, we’ll do it.”

Self said the CWS effectively turns TD Ameritrade Park Omaha and the team hotels into medical triage stations, making sure that all but the most major issues can be tended to without traveling far. The stadium has on-site X-ray and other diagnostic capabilities, as well as intravenous equipment. Therapists and chiropractors make housecalls at the hotels for players who might need pre- or postgame attention.

In addition to player injuries and illnesses, Self said over the years, the medical personnel he oversees has treated a coach’s child with an ear infection and diagnosed a broadcaster with a ruptured Achilles tendon, working to coordinate surgery with a hospital near his home.

“Creighton is the host institution and we take pride in being the best hosts we can be,” Self said. “The people who come to help us are the best in their fields with a phenomenal willingness to help out and make the College World Series® the showcase event that it is.”

Terry Grindstaff, PhD, an associate professor in the Department of Physical Therapy in the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions, is one such volunteer, working with the eight teams who descended on Omaha this week to ensure the health needs of players and other on-field personnel are being met.

“We try to fill in as much as we can to make sure the individual student-athletes and teams are taken care of,” said Grindstaff, who has volunteered at the College World Series since 2011. As an example, we may be asked if we can make a quick run to the pharmacy. Another role that sounds small, but is greatly appreciated, is at the bottom of every even inning, we make sure the umpires have enough water so they do not become dehydrated. These little things can make a big difference.”

For Grindstaff, up until recently, most of the help has been minor. But in the opening days of this year’s CWS, Grindstaff helped a player who needed dry-needling for an arm injury. It’s not a procedure an athletic trainer can perform, but a physical therapist like Grindstaff is well qualified to do so.

“The player had an arm injury and dry needling was performed by a physical therapist at home before he came to Omaha, so this was just a continuation of his care,” Grindstaff said. “It is a team effort and we help out whenever and wherever we can.”

Volunteers work in shifts during games and practices, but Self usually finds himself putting in full days at the ballpark. But, he said, it’s a dream job for a baseball fan.

“I love baseball, I love being around the game,” he said. “And these are the up-and-coming best baseball players in the country, playing at the highest level, so what more can you really ask for? It’s work, but it doesn’t feel like work. We’ve got a front-row seat to a premier sporting event and an opportunity to help both medically and to broadcast that Creighton name. We work hard, but we have a lot of fun doing it with great people.”


Casey Northcraft Honored With Drug Free Sport Continuing Education Award


Article reposted from Go
Author: Go

Creighton University Assistant Athletic Trainer Casey Northcraft is one of five recipients of  the 2017 Drug Free Sport Continuing Education Award.

In honor of the work that high school and collegiate certified athletic trainers perform to prevent drug abuse, in correcting dietary supplement misinformation, and as safeguards on the front lines of preventing addiction, The National Center for Drug Free Sport® (Drug Free Sport®) established the Drug Free Sport Continuing Education Award. In partnership with the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, the 2017 award winners of $1,000 grants are as follows:

– Tandi Hawkey, Senior Athletic Trainer; University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA).
– Chris Lacsamana, Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Medicine; Jacksonville State University.
Casey Northcraft, Assistant Athletic Trainer; Creighton University.
– Mike Van Bruggen, Head Athletic Trainer/Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Medicine; Carson-Newman University.
– Joe Whitson, Associate Athletic Director for Athletic Training Services; Bradley University.

“From a major California metropolis to a rural Alabama college town and points in between, these award winners represent some of the best in their field,” said Chris Guinty, President/CEO of Drug Free Sport. “We are impressed by their commitment to ensuring fair and safe sport. In a highly competitive field of applicants, these five men and women stood out. It’s an absolute pleasure to be a small part of continuing their education and work in sports medicine, along with bettering student-athletes.”

Drug Free Sport is the industry leader in sport drug testing and sport drug education, with its staff, technology, experience, client base, and field collectors being key assets to our success. Since 2013, Drug Free Sport has granted more than $28,000 in continuing education funds toward certified athletic trainers in high schools, colleges, and universities across the United States.

Northcraft is finishing her first full year at Creighton, where she works with the Bluejay volleyball and rowing teams.

The judging committee for the awards is comprised of a diverse group of sport drug testing professionals and certified athletic trainers, including a former award recipient.

ABOUT DRUG FREE SPORT: The National Center for Drug Free Sport, Inc. (Drug Free Sport®) is a world-wide leader in the sport drug-testing industry. Drug Free Sport administers comprehensive drug-testing programs, manages national and international collections, develops drug-testing policies, and provides educational services to a wide range of clients in sport, including MLB, NFL, NBA, WNBA, NBA D-League, PGA Tour, LPGA, USGA, CrossFit Games, NCAA, the Big Ten Conference, NAIA, World of Outlaws, and more than 300 colleges, universities, and amateur athletics organizations around the world. World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code-compliant testing for performance-enhancing substances and industry-innovating sport drug testing collection and education technologies are part of the comprehensive and confidential total solution Drug Free Sport provides for drug prevention needs. Drug Free Sport boasts a highly educated, experienced and diverse staff that is committed to technical innovation and maintaining the most extensive network of highly-trained certified sport drug-testing collectors in the industry. Drug Free Sport is based in Kansas City, Missouri. For more information, visit or find us on LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram.