Locally, the issue is affecting more districts at the middle school level.
“We make sure we re-condition our helmets every year, so we keep them in good shape,” said CCISD Athletic Director Brenda Marshall. “This year is going to be trying, for everybody because we’re still waiting on some helmets to come in, but we’re doing the best we can, and making sure the kids out there have their helmets.”
Marshall said the issue is coming at the manufacturer level.
“All the manufacturers we mainly use, Riddell and Schutt, have told us they have a shortage problem,” she said. “Part of it is labor force, part of it is getting the supplies of what they need to make the helmets.”
Across town, London ISD is experiencing a similar issue. LISD Athletic Director and varsity football coach, Robbie Moreno, said the district ordered a surplus of high school football helmets last year, but he needs more for his middle school players.
“At the middle school, our numbers went up a lot, so I’m short,” Moreno said.
However, Moreno is using his surplus of high school helmets to get more middle school ones.
“We’ve been exchanging with various schools in the Coastal Bend, we’ll give you high school for middle school,” he said. “So, everybody’s kind of working with each other due to the shortage.”
Marshall said, so far, no games have had to be rescheduled due to a lack of helmets, and she hopes they won’t have to reschedule any games.
“Every day we’ve had some helmets come in,” she said. “We want to make sure we take care of the kids and keep them safe.”
Moreno said the most important issue in getting the right helmets is making sure they fit properly.
“The fit’s gotta be right,” he said. “With the little ones, you have to make sure the strap is on right, it doesn’t turn — it’s just a safety issue.”