SAN PABLO — A freshman football player at Contra Costa College remained in critical condition Sunday after colliding with another player at a Saturday game against Los Medanos College.

Defensive back Wali Wright clashed helmet-to-helmet with a running back from the other team, just moments after the game began.

He suffered what his coaches described as a serious head and neck injury. He was transported to John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, where he remained in critical condition Sunday.

"He's doing a little better now, he's conscious now," said assistant coach George Pye, who visited Wright on Sunday morning.

His family is by his side but Wright is sedated and not yet able to speak, the coaches said.

The injury cast a pall on the game between the Contra Costa Comets and the Los Medanos Mustangs.

The game went on after Wright's injury, but head coach David Johnson said his team had a hard time pulling back together. Los Medanos beat them 45-6.

"They were stunned. I was, too," Johnson said. "I've been coaching for 25 years and I haven't seen that happen. ... It depends on where the helmet hits, where and how."

Wright went to high school in the Pasadena area, Johnson said.



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