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High school football player finds snake in helmet, practice halted

Aug 25, 2011, 7:05 PM EDT

Britain London Zoo AP

In news guaranteed to make you squirm, the Gravette (Ark.) High School football team’s practice was canceled recently when one of its players, senior Darrick Strzelecki, found a snake in his helmet. Make no mistake: the snake was in the helmet while Strzelecki was wearing it during practice. Oh yeah. That’s 50 points deducted from Slytherin House.

Strzelecki said he felt something odd in his helmet during practice Tuesday, but thought it was only a tangled lock of hair or sweat beading up as the team worked on extra points.

“I kept hitting, and it just kept bothering me,” Strzelecki told the Benton County Daily Record. During a break about 15 minutes into practice, Strzelecki took off his helmet and initially believed his teammates were teasing him.

“It looked like a rubber snake, and I thought somebody had pulled a practical joke on me,” he said. “When I grabbed it by the tail, that’s when it jerked, and I dropped the helmet.”

Snake: Not venomous. Player: Still creeped out. Story: Still awesome.

Gravette High is now changing its team name from the Lions to the Mongooses. Or, they should.

Snake in a helmet: Ark. player startled by serpent [Associated Press]

  1. southernpatriots - Aug 25, 2011 at 8:42 PM

    Back in the dinosaur age when we played football, a friend and fellow player left his helmet on the field as we all did when we ran laps. When we returned we all put on our helmets and immediately he screamed and threw off his helmet and a coral snake slithered out. In Oklahoma about 20 years ago we were visiting friends and their sons both played highschool football. In one child’s helmet was found a brown recluse spider. Thank God that the snake and spider did not bite the children.