KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Help has arrived for a local youth football player in need of a large-sized helmet.
Without the proper size of head protection, 12-year old Brandon Jackson can’t play football.
FOX4 introduced viewers to Jackson in late August, as his family and coaches in Kansas City’s KCFC hunted high and low for a helmet. The family originally believed a size 2X helmet would fit him, but after trying one, it didn’t fit either.
Coaches are enthusiastic about helping Jackson because of his size and potential. He’s not yet a teenager, but he’s already 6-foot-2 and 320 pounds — the size coaches at every level seek in linemen on both sides of the ball.
On Wednesday afternoon, Jackson and his family came to FOX4 studios in Kansas City. They met Chris Coffing, a national sales manager and professional helmet fitter with Riddell Sports. The company creates helmets for all 32 National Football League teams and numerous Division I college football teams.
A high-tech system Coffing uses makes precise measurements of Jackson’s head since a perfect fit ensures football safety.
Coffing learned of Jackson’s needs from Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Orlando Brown. Riddell Sports and Brown have agreed to pool their resources and pick up the tab for Jackson’s new helmet.
“I appreciate it because I’ll be able to play a game. Last week, I was out of the game because I wasn’t able to get a helmet, so I wasn’t in the game,” Jackson said.
The custom made helmet will cost anywhere from $900-$2,000, and Jackson’s family won’t pay a dime.
“We just love that a young man like yourself is wanting to play football. We want to give every person out there the ability to play,” Coffing said.
“Just giving him the ability to go out and play what I consider the greatest game ever is an awesome opportunity for him,” said Dustin Cundiff, Jackson’s coach with the Northland Revolution.
Coffing said it should take 3-4 weeks to make Brandon’s helmet. The KC 12-year-old grateful for the kindness — and so are his coaches — who hope to have the big lineman on the field in October.