Watch above: As Golden Bears football training camp gets set to begin, Canada’s anti-doping agency has confirmed at least one university athlete has tested positive for a banned substance.
EDMONTON – As Golden Bears football training camp gets set to begin, at least one Canadian university athlete has tested positive for banned substances.
Former Concordia University lineman Quinn Smith, who is now a Calgary Stampeder, apologized for using a banned substance, saying it was in a supplement he was taking.
The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport conducts random testing on all players in Canadian Interuniversity Sports leagues. Testing can happen anywhere, any time.
“Nobody here knows when they’re going to be tested. Everybody knows that they can be tested all year long, so there is a definite sense of, ‘you don’t want to get caught doing this.’ It would let everybody down,” said Chris Morris, head coach of the University of Alberta Golden Bears.
Morris says his athletes have never tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.
“All of the kids here understand the fact that football is not a long-term plan. All of the kids here understand that they’re here to get a university degree,” he said. “The coaches I know in the CIS have very high moral standards for their players and the players in their programs know it’s wrong.”
Tyler Greenslade, a linebacker with the Golden Bears, says he’s been tested three times over the course of one year.
“I’ve been tested once for urine samples and once for blood, so there’s two different ways that they test university athletes.”
He hopes the positive drug test doesn’t cast a negative light on university athletes.
“It’s always unfortunate when you hear that, but in no way, shape or form is it representative of the vast majority of student athletes in this country,” he said Thursday.
“I really hope that doesn’t taint the way that the general public looks at student athletes.”
CIS players who are caught doping are banned from playing or practising with college teams for two years.
In the CFL, random drug testing began in 2011. A player gets three strikes before being handed a three-game suspension. If caught a fourth time, there’s a lifetime ban.
Edmonton Eskimos head coach Chris Jones says the risk simply isn’t worth it, and stresses that with his players.
“They’re bad for you. They’ve been proven that they’re bad for you physically, and the long-term affects are certainly very harmful,” he said. “I would advise them not to do something like that.”
In 2010, more than a dozen University of Waterloo football players were caught using a banned substance.
With files from Kendra Slugoski, Global News.
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