An investigation by The Associated Press — based on interviews with players, testers, dealers and experts and an analysis of weight records for more than 61,000 players – has revealed that college football players are packing on significant weight — 30 pounds or more in a single year with anabolic steroids easy to buy, testing weak, and punishments inconsistent. The investigation revealed that while those running the multibillion-dollar sport say they believe the problem is under control, that control is hardly evident.
“It’s nothing like what’s going on in reality,” said Don Catlin, an anti-doping pioneer who spent years conducting the NCAA’s laboratory tests at UCLA.
In a 2009 NCAA survey, only about half the student athletes said they believed school testing deterred drug use. Students at the University of Maryland must get counseling after testing positive, but school officials are prohibited from disciplining first-time steroid users.
The associate athletics director for athletic training at Iowa State, Mark Coberley, said coaches and trainers use body composition, strength data, and other factors for identifying suspected cheaters.
From teenagers to baby boomers, Americans are trying to get an edge by illegally using anabolic steroids and human growth hormone, despite well-documented risks.
Most schools that use Drug Free Sport do not test for anabolic steroids, some are worried about the associated costs, and some others think there is not a problem.