Good Question: ‘Reply All’: College Athlete Insurance, Signs & Spelling Bees

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Louisville basketball player Kevin Ware is recovering after breaking his leg during the NCAA tournament.

Miriam Ring from Burnsville, Minn., wondered: Who pays college athletes’ medical bills?

At Louisville, they have a secondary insurance policy on varsity athletes, but just like most college kids, athletes are generally on their parents insurance.

Being an athlete is technically not a job, so it’s not covered by workers compensation laws.

And the NCAA only requires that athletes have proof of insurance – not that the school provide it.

If you have a claim that’s more than $90,000, the athlete qualifies for the NCAA’s catastrophic coverage, which has some continuing coverage. But in general, when you’re out of school and out of athletics, you’re out of luck.

Jesse Koester from Vadnais Heights was looking around and wondered: Why are all the street signs green?

Jesse, there was a time that they were not all green. Different cities would have different local colors until the 1980s, when the federal government created National Standards for Traffic Control Devices.

All street signs had to be green with reflectable white lettering. Green was the contrast to the red stop sign: green meaning proceed.

Amy Hahn from Gaylord wanted to know: Why do they call it a Spelling Bee?

We’ve used it since at least 1875, but according to, “bee” refers to a social gathering.

The earliest known example in print is a spinning bee in 1769.

It’s not likely related to the buzzing bumblebee, linguists think. It may have come from the Middle English word bene, which means “a prayer” or “a favor.”

Because people would come together to knit or spin wool as a favor for friends, bee may have been a shortened for of bene.


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