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Brian Cushing: Proof of an NFL Steroid Conspiracy
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NFL Steroid Conspiracy
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AP Sports Writer
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not quite sure that we actually know the extent to which steroid use
prevails within the National Football League and more importantly
within the NCAA. The case of Houston Texans linebacker Brian
Cushing, our reigning AP Defensive Rookie of the Year, is prime
example. Prior to the 2009 NFL draft, rumors swirled that Cushing
was using, but they were quickly dismissed as pure speculation.
I, for one, tend to believe that at the heart of most rumors there
lies a cornel of truth waiting to be exposed. Fast forward to
the 2009 NFL regular season and we find that Brian Cushing failed a
test in September for a performance enhancing drug on the NFL's
banned substance list. At first details were scarce on the actual
substance he tested positive for, as these test results are supposed
to remain confidential, but eventually someone familiar with Brian
Cushing's case, speaking under condition of anonymity, came forward
to reveal that he had increased levels of HGC. Not steroids,
not HGH, but HGC.
"He had one low-level positive test for HCG in September, and then every test after that was negative," the person said. "He has said he has no idea where the positive test came from."
After the failed test, Cushing filed an appeal which the NFL allowed to drag on through the regular season and into the offseason. After exhausting the appeals process on the grounds that he tested positive for a non-steroidal banned substance, this month the NFL finally imposed a four game suspension on Brian Cushing effective for the start of the 2010 NFL regular season.
"I believe we presented compelling evidence during the appeal process to challenge the test results, and I disagree with and am disappointed by the suspension," Cushing said in the statement. "Bound by the decision of the league, I regret the situation it presents to the Texans' organization, my teammates, and our fans."
I'm certainly no medical expert, but the tin foil hat wearing conspiracist within me was compelled to take a quick visit to WebMD to lookup HGC. Very simply put, HGC is given to patients for one of two reasons. It's given to prepubescent boys who are not sexually developing properly to assist with the dropping of the testicles; and it's given as a fertility aid to women who are trying to conceive, because it can cause ovulation in combination with another drug. So why did this particular substance show up in Cushing's test? Well, it just so happens that HGC is also widely used by steroid abusers to help kick start the natural production of testosterone following their discontinued use of anabolic steroids. That's why HGC appears on the NFL's banned substance list, it's not a masking agent, it's a facilitator that can be used to restart natural testosterone production so a user can be more gradually weaned off of steroids. In my non-medical opinion, the "low level positive test" back in September and all subsequent negative tests thereafter make a lot of sense. Cushing was just dumb enough to get caught assuming that the HGC had been completely flushed from his system. So he was able to reap the training benefits of steroid use in the offseason and just before the start of the regular season he quits juicing. Considering that HGC is administered by injection, I also find it rather difficult to believe that athletes who test positive for it are unaware of how it shows up in a failed drug test.
The other interesting thing to note is that Brian Cushing is the third winner of the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year Award to test positive for the use of performance enhancing drugs in the past ten seasons (Julius Peppers and Shawne Merriman fill out the triumvirate of exposed juicers). What this says to college athletes who are looking to make a run at a career in the NFL is deplorable. Use whatever advantage you can to get into the NFL, win a big contract, and then worry about the consequences later. And the photographic evidence is everywhere ... just Google "Brian Cushing before and after". Does this not sound familiar? Didn't we look at photos of Mark McGuire and Barry Bonds scratching our heads back in the 1990's? Why did it take almost a year for the NFL to suspend Brian Cushing? Why are we making excuses for the suspension on the grounds that the positive test was for a non-steroidal banned substance? Why are we ignoring the fact that steroid use and HGH are more prominent in professional sports than we're willing to admit? We are The Asterisk ...