8News Daily Poll: Should more universities employ therapists to help mentally prepare athletes?

Photo courtesy WAVY

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) – A college football team in Virginia has hired a therapist to help its players mentally prepare for games.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that Old Dominion University employs licensed clinical social worker Catherine Douglas Finney. Her specialty is counseling young people with anxiety issues.

Now known as “Coach Finney,” she met with the team during the preseason and has been messaging privately with two dozen players through social media and texting. She also counsels some in her private practice.

Head coach Bobby Wilder partly credits the team’s 4-2 record with her philosophy of positive thinking and meditation. It’s the Monarch’s best start since joining Conference USA in 2014.

Other schools also employ therapists for athletes. They including UCLA, Kansas State and Utah.

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