Making a concerted effort to beat ADD

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:59 AM ET

Alexander Graham Bell had it.

So did John Lennon.

Even Terry Bradshaw is afflicted.

That trio accomplished great things despite living with Attention Deficit Disorder.

Although not quite as famous, Winnipeg Blue Bomber hopeful Vinny Sutherland also suffers from the disorder.

"The misconception about ADD is that you can't concentrate on something," the receiver said this week. "The fact is you're concentrating on everything. I have ADD as bad as it comes.

"I can tell you what they're doing over there (referring to a television crew about 40 feet away). Oh, I'm bad."

Sutherland was first diagnosed when he was seven or eight years old back in his hometown of West Palm Beach, Fla.

"The teachers knew right away," he said. "I tried every year to go without Ritalin, but they made sure I took it."

Sutherland, who spent 2001 and 2002 in the NFL, now knows how to deal with his ADD, but he still has had to make a concentrated effort during team meetings this week to soak up as much information as he can in his first CFL camp.

"At school and in a meeting setting, I usually have to focus harder than others," he said. "Other people can sit back and do it from here (leaning back). I have to be fully facing the front, shoulders forward."


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