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Rise in high school athletes mixed with shortage of equipment leads to problems at Northeast Ohio schools

Collinwood canceled their Week 1 football game against Akron North because they don't have helmets.

CLEVELAND — The number of student-athletes in high school is on the rise and causing problems as football programs across Northeast Ohio don't have enough equipment.

Ted Ginn Sr. told 3News that this is the first time he's encountered a problem like this since he started coaching football in 1976.

Ginn coaches Glenville High School and first noticed a shortage of helmets. It's a problem other area coaches have noted too, including Strongsville coach Lou Cirino and Collinwood coach Greg Wheeler Jr.

"We felt it at all three levels, high school, middle school and youth," said Cirino. "We've shared helmets, we have passed helmets down, we've passed the helmets up just to figure out the situation."

The lack of helmets affected Collinwood. The team was forced to cancel their week one game against Akron North because they do not have their helmets.

Wheeler told 3News that their helmets are being "reconditioned," and have not been completed. The process makes sure the helmets are safe for children to wear during practices and games.

"I have so many helmets that are outdated, so we lost 15-20 helmets like that and some of them they just couldn't fix," said Ginn.

Riddell, one of the largest suppliers of football equipment, noted the shortage. They released a statement that you can read here.

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