FALL 2023

The Baldy Center Podcast

Episode 36. Nellie Drew and 3L students discuss model laws and initiatives to safeguard athletes

Published December 7, 2023

In Episode 36 of The Baldy Center Podcast, Helen “Nellie” Drew, Professor of Sports Law, and her 3L students: Maddie Drechsel, Matt Pickard and Juliette Miranda discuss the importance of having pre-established action plans for professional sports injuries, as well as the need for education on how to prevent injuries in youth sports. From model laws to collaborative projects, we discuss the ins and outs of sports injury law and practice.

Keywords: Action Plans; AEDs (Automated external defibrillators); Youth Sports Injuries; Model Laws.

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One of the things that I'm involved with is Project Play Western New York, an arm of the Wilson Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo, which is very much invested in developing best practices that we distill down from the Buffalo Sabres and the Buffalo Bills to try to make recreational activities the most rewarding, the safest we possibly can. And as part of that, I have connected many times with Drs. John Leddy and Barry Willer, who are concussion experts at UB's Concussion Management Clinic, as well as Dr. Leslie Bisson, the Sabres and Bills team physician. He is now known as the guy who saved Damar Hamlin's life. We are very much interested in reinventing policy to provide a safer, more applicable experience for athletes, typically in youth sports. And when we mentioned this work in class discussions, three students (Maddie, Matt, and Juliette) wanted to be part of that work.

We are fortunate to have the Practicum. Maddie and Matt have been with me since last spring on the initiative to provide a model law, which would require greater protection for sport of all levels for a variety of different reasons. And Juliette had a particular interest in injuries resulting from chronic abuse, which is a major issue we're seeing now with the professionalization, if you will, of youth sports.
                           —  Nellie Drew                               
                                (The Baldy Center Podcast, 2023)

Helen A. "Nellie" Drew

Research focus: Sports law, Discipline of professional athletes, Drug testing in sports, Collective bargaining, NCAA compliance, Title IX, Sports medicine and sports law, Professional sports contracts, Transactions, Facility issues

Nellie Drew.

Nellie Drew

Bio: Helen A. “Nellie” Drew, Professor of Practice in Sports Law (UB School of Law) is the director of the UB Center for the Advancement of Sport. Professor Drew teaches a variety of courses that incorporate topics such as drug testing in professional sports and professional player contract negotiation and arbitration. Drew is especially interested in the evolving research and litigation concerning concussions in both amateur and professional sports. Faculty profile.

Related Links

The UB Center for the Advancement of Sport is a major interdisciplinary initiative that provides students with opportunities to get a foothold in the sports industry through experiential learning including externships at local and even national athletic organizations.

Project Play WNY is a trusted resource for families and youth sport organizations to keep kids of all ages active and engaged through play and sport.

Logan, Podcast Host/Producer 2023-24



Logan, The Baldy Center’s 2023-2024 podcast host/producer, is a graduate student in UB's School of Architecture and Planning, Program on International Development and Global Health. Logan is interested in NGOs and nonprofit global health initiatives within the global south. Logan completed undergraduate studies in Public Health, with a minor in Spanish, and has recently been accepted into a certificate program at NYU x Rolling Stone for Modern Journalism. As graduate research assistant, Logan has worked for the Women’s Health Initiative, and, the Community for Global Health Equity. Recipient of the 2022 Art Goshin Global Health Fieldwork Award for research on Decentralization of Health Services in Ghana, Logan currently serves as a research assistant with Dr. Tia Palermo's 2PE lab. 

Executive Producers

Samantha Barbas
Professor, UB School of Law;
Director, The Baldy Center

Amanda M. Benzin 
Associate Director
The Baldy Center