Originally posted by Cedarville University on August 27, 2019
CEDARVILLE, Ohio, Aug. 27, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Big hits are a facet of football, but two dreamers tinkering in a garage are on the verge of making a game-changing impact on one of America’s favorite sports.
Rich Williams, (Cedarville University 2011 alumnus), and business partner, Justin Summerville, created the S.A.F.E. (Shock Absorbing Football Equipment) Clip, which attaches the facemask to a football helmet in a revolutionary way.
Williams and Summerville came up with a clip that attaches securely to the helmet, while allowing a slight amount of give on impact. Inside the clip is a small cube of rubberized plastic (Sorbothane), that absorbs and abates the G-forces from helmet collisions and allows the facemask to reset to its normal position.
In testing, helmets equipped with S.A.F.E. Clips reduced G-forces between 19% and 35%. Testing was conducted at an independent laboratory following standards established by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment.
High school and youth football teams in Ohio, Michigan, Florida and North Dakota have purchased the clips ($29.99/pair) for their helmets. Collegiate teams from the University of Minnesota, Wayne State University, the University of Toledo and Texas A&M have also tested the clips on their helmets.
The S.A.F.E. Clip had a number of prototypes before landing on the current model. Williams and Summerville have raised $700,000 in capital to develop and market their product. They have also secured three patents and manufactured more than 2,000 clips to date. Beyond football, the clip has potential application in other sports that use helmets, including hockey. The inventors have been in touch with the National Hockey League.
To take the sales and acquisition of their impact-absorbing clip to the next level, Williams and Summerville will be part of Cedarville University’s inaugural Entrepreneurship Accelerator program. The program seeks to connect business start-ups with expertise and funding sources.
“We want startup companies like S.A.F.E. Clip to benefit from our seasoned Entrepreneurs-in-Residence with deep experience in angel investing, venture capital, serial entrepreneurship and venture law,” said Dick Blanc, former managing partner of Accenture, LLP, and director of Cedarville’s Entrepreneurship Accelerator Program.
About Cedarville University
Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is a Baptist institution with 4,193 students. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, and strong graduation and retention rates. Visit www.cedarville.edu for more information.