Sunday, February 28, 2016

Joe Montana has a Smart Brain

While reading an article titled “Dementia and the Keys to Creativity,” in the February 20-21, 2016 edition of The Wall Street Journal, my thoughts turned to Joe Montana. Joe Montana is considered, by some, the greatest NFL quarterback ever to play the game. I then wondered how Montana might perform on the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale [WAIS]. This intelligence test, not only is a measure of intelligence, but also offers an extensive clinical assessment. For example, there is a set of 6 Verbal subtests and a set of 5 Performance subtests. The Verbal subtests are associated with cognitive ability or verbal efficiency located in the left hemisphere of the brain while the Performance subtests measure visual motor activities that are associated with cognitive ability in the right hemisphere of the brain. While Joe played quarterback for the Fighting Irish and the San Francisco 49ers, he was at the top of his game, winning all those Super Bowls. I hypothesized that if Joe Montana was administered the WAIS, he would have attained a significantly higher total Performance IQ score than a total Verbal IQ score. My reasoning is that the Performance IQ measures such things as planning, organization, concept formation, concentration, and attention along with visual motor functioning activities that favor action oriented individuals .These individuals often have a narcissistic character type diagnosis. In other words, Joe would do well with the tasks, on this portion of the test, that require external manipulation and action. And, as football skills require gross motor, visual motor coordination, and anticipation of causal related events like throwing a football to a receiver. Joe’s football playing ability did not require exceptional verbal skills. The Verbal subtests, on the other hand, are associated with questions dealing with ideas requiring thought, concentration, and internal elaboration. Also, this test measures a breath of concepts, ideas and experience gained during one’s lifetime; measures of social conventionality and social judgment- or social interaction; verbal concept formation and immediate memory and recall; and, a memory task that’s not only extensive, but requires concentration and attention .An individual with a verbal fluency like President Obama would have an extremely high score on these sub tests. To be continued

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