It’s Time to Work Together to Stop Doping in Sports

The greatest threat to international sport isn’t the pay offs in Salt Lake City, but the use of dangerous performance-enhancing drugs. Their use threatens the very foundation of sport. The integrity, the image and even the existence of elite-level international competition is in jeopardy. Every world-class event is somehow tainted by “doping”, the use of illicit performance-enhancing drugs.

Charges continue to fly among world governing bodies as they try to shift blame and responsibility for the sullied reputation of international competition. In the aftermath of what is arguably the most successful Olympic Games ever, accusations persist that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) routinely turns a blind eye to evidence of doping and that its drug-detection methods are ineffectual. Perhaps overly sensitive to continued criticism about drugs in the Olympics, IOC leaders ripped the United States Track and Field Federation. They accused them of turning a blind eye and being in a “state of denial” about the use of performance-enhancing drugs by C.J. Hunter, the world shot-put champion and husband of Olympian Marian Jones. The IOC has even been accused of “covering-up” the drug epidemic in sport, but critics contend that the organization has sometimes discarded positive drug test results in fear that the image of the Games would suffer.

At the Atlanta Games in 1996 several athletes tested positive for Probenecid, the banned masking agent, but the IOC took no action. Only two Olympians were reported for testing positive for steroids although there were several other unreported positive samples. In spite of its new one million-dollar mass spectrometer, the IOC, afraid of legal challenges from athletes, discarded the results. The motivation, say critics, for the IOC’s soft policy on doping is the fear of loss of sponsorships resulting from a tarnished image. How much more tarnished does the image need to be before they put their considerable weight and influence behind an international independent drug testing and enforcement agency? At a meeting in 1999 at the IOC’s World Conference on Doping in Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland, the representatives of different sports federations from around the world failed to reach agreement for instituting a meaningful policy in drug enforcement which included a mandatory 2-year ban for doping. The delegates didn’t agree on a policy, ostensibly because the IOC insisted on control.

Historically, the IOC would appear to be a leader in the war against doping. It was the IOC that first defined and banned doping in 1967. The first drug tests in international sport were administered for research purposes by the IOC at the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City. No athletes were punished for positive tests. The motivation for drug testing was based upon suspicions about drug related deaths among cyclists and soccer players and rumors about widespread drug use among Eastern European athletes. Rumors subsequently were verified after the fall of the Berlin Wall and world access to secret records detailing significant and long-term performance-enhancing drug use among East German athletes.

In 1982 the IOC added testosterone to its list of banned substances. More and more athletes tested positive for drug use in a wide range of amateur and professional sports as the investigations into drug use in sports came under closer public scrutiny.

As testing methods and the detection of banned substances became more familiar to athletes and the professionals that helped them with doping, the better the methods to avoid detection became. In the mid 1980’s steroid users turned to unbanned masking drugs or switched to harder to detect substances such as human growth hormone, hGH. The most recent substance to be added to the “doper’s pharmacy” is Erythropoietin (EPO), a form of protein that stimulates the formation of red blood cells and therefore boosts the oxygen-carrying capacity of an athlete’s blood.

There may be solutions out there to stem the wholesale use of performance-enhancing drugs in sport besides detection and punishment. Indeed, education and public condemnation is the best long-term idea, but something drastic needs to be done to stop doping now. Drastic measures are called for. The IOC and other international governing bodies in sport need to set their self-interests aside and form a united front to fight doping at every level.

The development of drug tests and administering the tests is expensive. On some scales it is cost prohibitive. Purchasing and developing equipment to administer effective testing is also costly.

Why not pool the drug testing financial resources from the different organizations around the world? Set aside self-interest, pride and arrogance and develop an independent body financed by a consortium of the IOC and world sports organizations. Solicit sponsors to raise money. Give the independent body worldwide jurisdiction to test randomly anywhere in the world. Vest it with enforcement authority at all levels and provide for serious, mandatory penalties. Then constitute a tribunal to hear and decide appeals. There has been enough fingerpointing, accusations and shifting blame and responsibility. Let’s unite to send a message that the world sport community is finally serious and will do whatever it takes to get the “doping” problem under control.

This solution would lead to state-of-the-art technology, remove politics and bribery from the equation and allow for swift and sure punishment. Let’s put a “zero tolerance” policy in effect for doping and then have guts enough to enforce it!

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Dr. Richard Bell, Chair of Sport Management, One Academy Drive, Daphne, AL 35626-7055, (334) 626-3303, email:


2017-12-11T11:27:58-05:00February 13th, 2008|Contemporary Sports Issues, Sports Management, Sports Studies and Sports Psychology|Comments Off on It’s Time to Work Together to Stop Doping in Sports

Model Student Athlete Drug Testing Policy

Student Drug Screening

The Board of Education values student athletes not only for their athletic talent but also for their leadership and scholastic abilities. Student athletes, as role models for other students, are a key to our goal of providing the best possible education program for all students. To achieve our goal and to maximize the skills and talents of our students, it is important that every student, and each employee, of our school system understand the dangers of tobacco, drug and alcohol abuse. This policy statement should clarify our position on student athlete tobacco, drug and alcohol use. For the purposes of this policy, school sports teams and cheerleading squads are, therefore, termed student athletes by the Board of Education. In addition, all of these groups perform functions that display them as role models. Participation in extra-curricular activities is a privilege which can be taken away for failure to comply with this policy. The Board reserves the right to depart from this policy where it deems it is appropriate. Except where specifically prohibited by law, the guidelines contained within this document may be changed by the Board at any time. Students covered by this policy will be informed of changes.

Policy Objectives 

  1. To create and maintain a safe, drug-free environment for all student athletes
  2. To encourage any student athlete with a dependence on, or addiction to, tobacco, alcohol or other drugs to seek help in overcoming the problem.
  3. To reduce the likelihood of incidents of accidental personal injury and/or damage to students or property.
  4. To minimize the likelihood that school property will be used for illicit drug activities.
  5. To protect the reputation of the school system and its students.

Substance abuse can be a serious threat to the school system, its students, visitors and employees. It is the belief of the Board that the benefits derived from the policy objectives outweigh the potential inconvenience to athletes. The Board earnestly solicits the understanding and cooperation of all school staff, students and parents, especially those participating in student athletics, in implementing this policy.

The Board expects all student athletes to remain tobacco, alcohol, and drug free. No student athlete shall use tobacco, alcohol or other mood altering substances. Outside conduct of a substance abuse-related nature which affects a student athlete’s sports or academic performance or reflects badly on the school is prohibited and will be addressed administratively. Students must inform their coach/assistant coach/director when they are legitimately taking medication which may affect their ability to practice or compete, in order to avoid creating safety problems and violating this Drug and Alcohol Policy.


To better assure these expectations, the Board reserves the right to require all student athletes to submit to drug tests to maintain safety and security. The School Board has developed this student athletic testing program to follow, as appropriate, the process of 49 CFR Part 40 and the Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991. The Board encourages and may require its employees to be trained in tobacco, alcohol, and drug usage recognition skills.

Pursuant to Board policy and regulations, students participating in athletics (defined as any student, male or female, in grades seven through twelve, who is a member of any Board sponsored school sports team and cheerleading squads) may be tested prior to beginning a seasonal activity, during the season of the activity, or on a random basis without advance notice. When Board officials (Employees) have reasonable suspicion to believe a student athlete has violated its Alcohol and Drug Policy, they may require the student to undergo drug testing.

A student who has tested positive for tobacco, alcohol, and/or other drugs and whom had the positive test result confirmed by the Board’s Medical Review Officer will be subject to discipline, including suspension from student activities. Refusal to cooperate with the Board in any test investigation will result in discipline, up to and including immediate suspension from participating in student activities.

No student athlete testing positive, refusing to test, refusing to cooperate with testing or being in violation of this policy will be penalized academically. Information, including testing positive, will not be released to criminal or juvenile authorities unless under compulsion by valid state or federal laws.

All information, interviews, reports, statements, memoranda, and test results, either written or otherwise, received by the Board through its drug, alcohol and tobacco testing program are confidential communications and may not be used or received in evidence, obtained in discovery, or disclosed in any public or private proceedings except in the following:

(a) As directed by the specific, written consent of the parent/guardian and/or student authorizing release of the information to an identified person.

(b) To a covered student athlete decision-maker in a lawsuit, grievance, or other proceeding initiated by or on behalf of the student athlete.

Any questions should be directed to the persons assigned as the Board’s Drug Program Coordinator(s).

Note of Clarification:

This policy in no way circumvents nor may be used in place of Board Policy and School Rules pertaining to the use, possession, distribution, manufacturing, of tobacco, alcohol, or other drugs at/or away from school, School Board property, or at school sponsored events.

If a student athlete is in violation of such policies and rules, disciplinary consequences will be through normal school channels associated with said policies and rules. The consequences under the “Drug Screening Policy” become secondary.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Hoover City Schools, 100 Municipal Drive, Suite

200, Hoover, AL 35216-5500, (205) 435-1000.

2016-10-14T10:32:06-05:00February 13th, 2008|Contemporary Sports Issues, Sports Facilities, Sports Management|Comments Off on Model Student Athlete Drug Testing Policy

A Journey Through Olympic Drug Testing Rules: A Practitioner’s Guide to Understanding Drug Testing Within the Olympic Movement

It’s the spring
of the year 2000, and you are looking forward to your first summer of
the new Millennium. Baseball season has started, the NBA playoffs are
on the horizon, Wimbledon, the French Open, and the US Open are all
ahead of you. And best of all, this is an Olympic year. During the fall,
your television will be taken over by gymnastics, soccer, softball,
and track & field with interesting vignettes telling the amazing stories
of sacrifice and hardship leading up to Olympic glory. You even remember,
with misty eyed nostalgia, your days as a high school athlete; its not
important that it was in the sphere of intramural. YOU WERE A CONTENDER!
If you had applied yourself, you too could have been an Olympian. Now,
you are a hard working attorney looking forward to a summer of sitting
on your couch and watching other great athletes. Little did you know
that you would play a part in the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
Isn’t life funny?

A few months prior
to the start of the 2000 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Track & Field,
Amanda, a top U.S. athlete, comes to your office seeking guidance. Although
she has been drug tested consistently throughout her career, she has
confessed that the recent media attention involving the creation of
new organizations involved with drug testing, ¹ the new methods of drug
testing, and the rise in the number of athletes that have recently tested
positive have been somewhat disconcerting to her, especially since this
is an Olympic year. Amanda is confident that she will make the Olympic
team and compete in the U.S., Canada, and Australia before reporting
to the Olympic Village in September of 2000. While she has professed
to be drug free, she would like to better understanding the changes
that have been made in the recent months with respect to drug testing.
Amanda has provided you with her training schedule to assist you in
your expect legal analysis.

Training Schedule

  1. Training
    for Olympic Trials in the U.S. (April – June 2000)
  2. Competing
    in the Olympic Trials (July 2000)
  3. Resting
    and Training in the U.S. (End of July)
  4. Competing
    and training in Canada. (August 1-7, 2000)
  5. Training
    and Competing in the U.S. (August 8-14, 2000)
  6. Reporting
    to U.S. training camp in Brisbane, Australia
    (August 15-September 14, 2000)
  7. Report
    to Olympic Village in Sydney, Australia
    (September 15, 2000)
  8. Compete
    in Olympic Games (September 15-October 1, 2000)

Where do you begin
your research in order to provide adequate advice to Amanda? -1-


While many top U.S.
Olympic caliber athletes have been drug tested throughout their careers,
few have truly understood the drug testing process. The ever-changing
rules and regulations, as well as the increase in number of doping control
programs, while appearing to assist in the fight against doping in sport,
have proven to be confusing and sometimes inconsistent. Many organizations
cannot interpret their own rules, nor do they fully understand the jurisdictional
issues that arise with respect to every sample taken until they are
caught in a crisis. This article attempts to untangle the web of rules
and regulations and provide both athletes, coaches, and athlete representatives
with a working knowledge of master: 1) when an athlete is subject to
drug testing, 2) which organizations oversee doping control², and 3)
the potential problems that arise when more than one organization is

History of Cheating

Ever since the ancient
Olympic games, athletes have sought to gain the glory of being an Olympic
champion, with all its attendant accolades, gifts and awards. Over time,
this quest for greatness has tempted athletes to obtain athletic prowess
by dishonest means. Drug testing of athletes, to route out performance
enhancing drug use, began within the Olympic Movement³ in 1968. It continues
today. In modern times, unscrupulous doctors have assisted athletes
in gaining an edge against their opponents. The most notorious and recent
Olympic exposure of cheating occurred during the 1988 Olympic Games
in Seoul, Korea, when Ben Johnson was exposed as a “steroid user.” However,
not all Olympic drug infractions are the product of intentional actions
on the part of the athletes. Recently, several former East German athletes
have brought suit in Germany alleging that they were unknowingly, given
performance-enhancing drugs, under the guise of “vitamins.” These cases
reinforce to the public what Olympic athletes have know for decades–drugs
in sports does exist.


To being your research
and advise Amanda, you will need to obtain the following documents:

International Olympic
Committee Charter
International Olympic Committee Medical Code
International Amateur Athletic Federation Rules
International Amateur Athletic Federation Procedural Guidelines for
Doping Control
1998 Ted Stevens Olympic & Amateur Sports Act § 2250
United States Olympic Committee National Anti-Doping Program Document

United States Olympic Committee Memorandum of Agreement with USA Track
& Field
United States Olympic Committee Constitution & By Laws
United States Olympic Committee Code of Conduct 2000 Olympic Games
United States Olympic Committee Grievance Procedures for Code of Conduct
and Team Selection 2000 Olympic Games
United States Olympic Committee Bilateral Agreement with the Australia
Drug Testing Agency
United States
Olympic Committee Bilateral Agreement with the Canadian Centre for Ethics
in Sports
USA Track & Field Governance Handbook

is an Athlete subject to drug testing?

Now that you have
all the materials you need, you can begin your legal analysis. Amanda
tells you that she doesn’t understand why she gets tested during some
competitions and not others, and, more important, she tells you she
does not understand why she is tested at home.

Based upon your
exhaustive review of the relevant documents, you now understand that
there are two types of drug testing that Olympic-caliber athletes are
subject to “in-competition” and “out-of-competition.” Slightly different
rules apply to each category of testing.4

In-competition drug
testing occurs during a specified competition. Athletes are notified
that they will be tested upon completion of an event, during a competition.
Once notified, athletes are required to provide a urine sample while
at the competition site. The procedures by which an athlete is selected
for drug testing depends upon the organization that responsible for
process is random, based upon place-finish.

drug testing, on the other hand, occurs outside of competition. Usually,
out-of-competition drug tests are conducted with no advanced notice
to the athlete and may occur at any time. (i.e. home, work, or training
facility6). Once notified, athletes are required
to submit to the drug test, regardless of where s/he may be located
at the time of notification. 7 The process by
which an athlete is selected for out-of -competition drug testing is
also organization specific. For example, USATF, randomly selects a specified
number of athletes for testing each month. USATF selects athletes based
upon their ranking in a particular event.

responsible for carrying out drug testing

Now that Amanda
understands the types of drug tests that she is subject to, it is critical
that she understands what organizations have the authority8 to carry
out the drug testing process.

Almost every sport
organization today conducts or participates in some type of drug testing
program, regardless of whether its athletes are amateur or professional.
Professional sport organizations such as the NCAA, National Basketball
Association, Women’s National Basketball Association, National Football
League, Major League Baseball, and National Hockey League each conduct
their own drug testing programs, have their own drug testing protocol,
and coordinate their own list of prohibited substances.

Unlike those athletes
associated with professional organizations, elite Olympic athletes are
subject to drug testing by multiple organizations. Within the Olympic
Movement, the International Olympic Committee (IOC), some International
Federations (IF’s), the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), and
certain other national organizations, by agreement, all conduct drug
testing programs and have the ability to drug test U.S. athletes either
during competition, out-of-competition, or both. However, the likelihood
that an athlete will be subject to drug testing by all four (4) organizations
is heavily dependent on the level at which the athlete competes, for
reasons that are provided below. 9

the United States

Athletes that compete
on a national level can expect to be drug tested by the United States
Olympic Committee (USOC).10 The USOC, through
the National Anti-Doping Program (NADP), is responsible for coordinating
both in-competition drug testing for each National Governing Body (NGB).11
The NADP is implemented through individual memoranda of agreement
(MOA) between the USOC and each individual NGB. Each MOA establishes
the terms and conditions by which the USOC is responsible for conducting
drug testing for an NGB.

Under the USOC/USATF
MOA, USAFT is responsible for selecting certain domestic competitions
in which drug testing will occur, for determining the process by which
athletes are selected for domestic out-of-competition drug testing,
and for implementing the disciplinary process upon notice that a sample
has tested positive for a prohibited substance. 12
The USOC, on the other hand, is responsible for coordinating every other
aspect of the drug testing process. Thus, in the event that Amanda competes
in a domestic competition that has been selected for drug testing by
USATF, she can expect drug testing by USAFT, she can expect drug testing
to take place by the USOC, in accordance with the NADP, as amended by
the MOA. Furthermore, as the USOC is also responsible for conducting
out-of-competition drug testing, pursuant to the NADP and MOA, in the
event that Amanda ranks among the top athletes in her event, she will
be drug tested outside of competition as well.13


Athletes competing
on an international level, either domestically or abroad, can also expect
to be drug tested by their respective international federation. The
international federation for track & field,14
the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF), is responsible
for coordinating all aspects of track & field on an international level,
including the implementation of a drug testing program.15
According to the rules associated with the IAAF’s drug testing program,
the IAAF is responsible for conducting drug testing during the following
competitions: World
Championships and World Cups, Grand Prix and Permit Meetings, and other
designated competitions.16 In addition, IAAF
rules authorize it to conduct out-of-competition drug testing on a member
federation’s athletes.17

Thus, when Amanda
competes abroad or in certain internationally sanctioned competitions
in the U.S.,18 the IAAF will have the authority
to drug test Amanda during that competition. Furthermore, since Amanda
is a world ranked athlete, she is eligible to be drug tested outside
of competition by the IAAF. Similar to the out-of-competition drug test
conducted by the USOC, an out-of-competition drug test conducted by
the IAAF can occur at any time and any place, with no notice to the

Testing Arrangements

When Amanda travels
to Australia for training and/or competition prior to the U.S. Olympic
Trials, she will be subject to drug testing by the Australian Sports
Drug Agency (ASDA), as well as the USOC. Pursuant to a “Trilateral Agreement”,
the ASDA, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES), and USOC have
all agreed to allow each country’s athletes. This Trilateral Agreement
has been implemented through individual bilateral agreements, which
set forth the terms and conditions pursuant to which the drug test must
be conducted.

According to the
bilateral agreement between the USOC and the ASDA.19
The ASDA has the authority to drug test an American athlete while s/he
is residing, training, and/or competing in Australia, and vice versa.20
The USOC has the authority to drug test an Australian athlete that USOC
also has the ability to drug test U.S. athletes while they are competing,
training, or residing in Australia. Notwithstanding ASDA’s and the USOC’s
ability to drug test a U.S. athlete in Australia, the responsibility
of conducting disciplinary procedures still rests with each athlete’s

Finally, in some
instances, Olympic athletes may be subject to drug testing conducted
by the recently created World Anti-doping Agency (WADA). WADA was created
under the auspices of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) with
the goal of coordinating drug testing on a global level during the intervals
between the Pan American and Olympic Games. However, WADA’s limited
objective for the year 2000 is to conduct out-of-competition drug testing
programs.22 In addition, WADA will have the responsibility
of monitoring the conduct of both the USOC and IAAF have drug testing
programs, the likelihood that an American track & field athlete will
be subject to drug testing by WADA is minimal.

Testing At Olympic Trial Events

Each NGB has a
selection process for athletes who will represent the United States
at the Olympic Games. Some NGB’s evaluate performance over a series
of competitions, while other NGB’s base selection on performance at
a specific Olympic Trials event. USAFT’s selection process falls into
the later category.

All athletes participating
in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Track & Field are eligible to be
drug tested. Pursuant to its authority under the NADP, the USOC has
the authority to conduct drug testing at all Olympic an Pan American
Trials competitions.23 Thus, Amanda should be
informed that, if selected to the U.S. Olympic Team, she can expect
to be drug tested upon completion of her event.


Each sports organization
described above has a disciplinary process that is implemented once
an athlete’s urine sample reveals the presence of a prohibited substance.
Pursuant to the rules of the USOC NADP, IAAF, and the ASDA/USOC bilateral
agreement, disciplinary proceedings are to be held by the appropriate
NGB.24 Thus, once an NGB is notified by one of
these organizations that a urine sample has tested positive for a prohibited
substance, the NGB is responsible for implementing disciplinary proceedings.
For USATF, the disciplinary process begins with the implementation of
USATF Regulation 10–Doping Control.

Regulation 10

USATF Regulation
10 is the provision, within the USATF Bylaws, that authorizes USATF
to implement disciplinary proceedings against an athlete. Additionally,
it sets forth the disciplinary process that USATF is required to implement
once it has been notified that a urine sample has tested positive for
a prohibited substance.

Under Regulation
10, athletes are afforded certain rights and opportunities, which included
the following: (1) the right to have “B” sample analyzed,25
(2) the right to a full hearing26, and (3) the
right to an appeal. As of January 2000, the American Arbitration Association(AAA)
is responsible for adjudicating all hearings and appeals for USATF,
pursuant to USATF Regulation.27

Article IX

In addition to USAFT
Regulation 10, an athlete may utilize another forum designated by Article
IX of the USOC Constitution and Chapter IX of the USOC Bylaws to resolve
issues of eligibility. According to these provisions, an athlete who
believes that s/he has been denied the opportunity to participate in
a protected competition 28 has the opportunity
to have an expedited hearing before the American Arbitration Association
(AAA). 29 Arbitrations that are held pursuant
to this Article are held in accordance with special AAA rules and regulations
relating to Olympic and Pan American Games competitions. Athletes who
utilize this provision are entitled to a hearing and a decision within
forty-eight (48) hours of delivery of the notice of the hearing.30

Thus, in the event
that one of Amanda’s urine samples tests positive during either an in-competition
or out-of-competition drug test, or Olympic Trials competition, she
would have the opportunity to have the matter heard by a AAA panel,
pursuant to USATF Regulation 10. In the event that USATF denied Amanda
the opportunity to compete, she could utilize the AAA arbitration in
accordance with Article IX of the USOC Constitution and Chapter IX of
the USOC Bylaws.

Trials–Nomination to the Olympic Team

According to the
USOC Constitution and Bylaws, the USOC has exclusive jurisdiction over
members of the U.S. Olympic Team and all matters relating to their participation
in the Olympic Games, once the Olympic team has been nominated by an
NGB. 31Consistent with this authority, set forth
the appropriate process for handling any disciplinary and/or grievance
matters. 32Members of the U.S. Olympic team are
required to utilize these procedures for any issue that may arise regarding
their eligibility and/or participation in the Olympic Games.

Olympic Trails Jurisdictional Issues

Immediately upon
completion of the U.S. Olympic Trials and an athlete’s return to competition/training,
all of the organizations described above resume their authority to drug
test him/her. However, for all members of the U.S. Olympic team, the
USOC simultaneously retains its authority to handle all disciplinary
matters and grievance complaints, as they relate to a member of the
U.S. Olympic team and their Olympic Games. The USOC retains this authority
until the completion of the 2000 Olympic Games. Thus, notwithstanding
the ability of any organization to conduct drug testing on an athlete
and its authority to handle any subsequent disciplinary proceedings,
the USOC Constitution and Bylaws specify that the USOC has authority
over any issue related to discipline and/or grievance complaints. As
a result, a situation of overlapping jurisdiction is created, the resolution
of which remains unclear as of the date of this article.

Consider the following
possible scenario. Amanda, as indicated in her event schedule, competes
in Australia after the Olympic Trials and is selected for drug testing.
Assume that her sample reveals the presence of a prohibited substance.
ASDA is required to notify USOC of the positive finding. The USOC is
required to notify USATF, pursuant to the USOC/ASDA bilateral agreement.
Upon notification, USATF is required to notify Amanda that her sample
has tested positive for a prohibited substance and inform her that the
following disciplinary procedures will now be implemented. However,
it is unclear whether the USOC Grievance Procedures, or USATF Regulation
10 apply.

Because this sample
was taken pursuant to the ASDA’s authority, under the USOC/ASDA bilateral
agreement, the athlete’s hame federation is responsible for handling
the disciplinary process.33 However, because
Amanda is now a member of the U.S. Olympic team, the USOC also has jurisdiction
over the disciplinary process. 34 Which organization
is responsible for resolving the matter is unclear.35
This conflict exists not only with drug testing conducted pursuant to
the USOC/ASDA bilateral agreement, but also with drug tests that are
conducted pursuant to the USOC’s NADP, and the IAAF’s doping control
program, each of which specify specific procedures that must follow
in the event of a positive finding.

Games–IOC Authority

As the “supreme
authority”36 within the Olympic Movement, the
IOC is responsible for conducting drug testing during the Olympic Games,
pursuant to the rules and regulations established by IOC Medical Code.
The IOC Medical Code also sets forth the disciplinary process that must
be followed once a drug test reveals the presence of a prohibited substance.
37According to those procedures, the IOC Medical
commission has the sole authority to decide issues relating to positive
drug tests.38 However, all decisions may be appealed
to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.39

Thus, if an American
athlete competing at the Olympic Games is drug tested and the sample(s)
given test positive, the Chief de Mission of the U.S. Olympic delegation
is notified tht the test has revealed the presence of a prohibited substance.
According the procedures set forth in the IOC Medical Code, the IOC
Medical Commission determines whether a doping violation has taken place
and refers its decision to the IOC Executive Committee for approval
and the imposition of a penalty. Any decision adverse to the athlete
may be appealed to CAS for a final determination.

the rights of an athlete to appeal the IOC’s determination, the USOC
Grievance Procedures continue to be effective. Thus, after the IOC determines
that a doping violation has occurred, an athlete could presumably invoke
the American Arbitration Association arbitration process to process
to prevent his/her removal from the U.S. Olympic Team.40
As a result, it is again unclear whether your athlete is required to
adhere to those procedures set forth by the IOC or whether s/he can
pursue an appeal before the AAA.

Does This Mean For Amanda?

A great deal. Prior
to the start of the U.S. Olympic Team Trails for Track & Field, Amanda
can expect to be drug tested by every one of the organizations mentioned
above, both in and outside of competition. For those competitions that
are conducted in the United States, drug testing will be conducted by
the USOC.41 If Amanda should expect to be drug
tested outside of competition in both the United States and Canada,
by either the USOC, IAAF, the ASDA, and/or WADA.

In the event that
any of the samples taken prior to, or during the U.S. Olympic Team Trials
for Track & Field reveal the presence of a prohibited substance, Amanda
can expect to be notified by USATF of the positive finding. At such
time, Amanda would be entitled to the opportunities afforded by USA
Regulation 10. In addition, Amanda would have immediate recourse through
Article IX of the USOC Constitution and Chapter IX of the USOC Bylaws
to reexamine her eligibility status for the U.S. Olympic Trials and
the Olympic Games. A great deal.

Upon completion
of the U.S. Olympic Trials, Amanda can still expect to be drug tested
by the USOC, IAAF, ASDA, or WADA. However, whether USATF will be responsible
for conducting disciplinary proceedings will be dependent on whether
Amanda has been nominated to the U.S. Olympic Team.

If Amanda is not
nominated to the U.S. Olympic Team for Track & Field, and a sample taken
after the Olympic Trials reveals the presence of a prohibited substance,
Amanda can expect disciplinary proceedings to be conducted by USATF,
pursuant to USATF Regulation 10.

However, if Amanda
is nominated to the U.S. Olympic Team, and a sample taken before
or after the Olympic Trials reveals the presence of a prohibited substance,
it is unclear which organization, USATF or the USOC, would have the
ability to implement disciplinary proceedings. What is clear is, however,
is that Amanda would have recourse through Article IX of the USOC Constitution
& Bylaws, if either the USOC or USATF first denied her the opportunity
to compete in the Olympic Games.


This article only
begins to touch on the many legal issues associated with drug testing.
Ultimately, it will be up to you, the attorney, to navigate successfully
the impossibly complicated body of rules and regulations associated
with each organizations’s drug testing program, in order to adequately
represent your client. Understanding the many organizations within the
Olympic Movement that are involved with drug testing, as well as the
different responsibilities of these organizations, will be a very challenging
task. However, one thing should be apparent, drug testing is certain
to occur, whether it be during a competition or outside a competition.
Thus, understanding the differences between the United States Olympic
Committee, the International Federation, the World Anti-doping Agency,
and any other organization that may have the authority to drug test
an athlete, may be the most important thing that an athlete can do to
prepare for the 2000 Olympic Games.


1.The term of art
for drug testing within the Olympic Movement is “doping control.” These
terms are interchanged throughout this Article. Drug testing is the
process that has been developed over time to ensure that an athlete
and analyzing that sample for both technique. It includes taking a urine
sample from an athlete and analyzing that sample for both prohibited
substances and techniques. While urine is the body fluid that is currently
analyzed during the 2000 sydeny Games.

2.See id.

3.The tem Olympic
Movement “stems from modern Olympism.” It “encompasses organizations,
athletes, and other persons who agree to be bound by the Olympic Charter.”
Criterion for belonging to the Olympic Movement is recognition by the
International Olympic Committee. See International Olympic Committee
Charter §§ 4and 5, The Olympic Charter (visited April 14, 2000)
[hereinafter IOC Charter].

4.See id

5.See generally,
Medical Commission (visited April 14, 2000)[hereinafter
IOC Medical Commission].

6.See generally,
IAAF Rules and Regulations (visited April 14, 2000) http://archive.www.worldsport/sports/athletics/rules/rules.html

7.See generally,
IAAF Division III (visited April 14, 2000) http://archive.www.worldsports/athletics/rules/32.html.

8.Authority, as
used throughout this article, is meant to include not only the ability
to conduct drug testing but also the ability to implement disciplinary
proceedings, if necessary.

9.For example, a
U.S. athlete that is ranked number two (2) in the world, in a particular
event, has much greater chance of being drug tested by all four (4)
organizations than a U.S. athlete that is ranked number ten (10) in
the United States.

10.The United States
Olympic Committee is the United States’ representative – the National
Olympic Committee (NOC) – in the Internationally Olympic Committee.
As such, the USOC is responsible for coordinating the activity of all
American based Olympic and Pan American sport organizations in the United

11.Each sport within
the Olympic Movement has a national federation, which is responsible
for coordinating the activity for that particular sport in the country.
In the United States these federations are known as national governing
bodies (NGB). USA Track & Field is the NGB for track & field, long distance
running, cross country, and race walking, in the United States. For
more infomation on recognition of NGB’s in the United States see the
1998 Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sport Act §2205.

12.See NADP Section
9.1(b) and

13.The USOC implements
a No-Advance-Notice (NAN) out-of-competition drug testing program. This
means that athletes are given no notice that the out-of-competition
drug test is going to occur. For more information, see USOC NADP, Attachment

14.Each national
federation within the Olympic Movement belongs to an international federation
– the worldwide governing body for that particular sport. The international
federation is responsible for all technical aspects of the sport outside
the Olympic Games.

15.It is a condition
of membership in the IAAF that each NGB abide by the IAAF Rules and
Regulations, which provide for both in-competition and out-of-competition
drug testing. See IAAF Rule 2 and 55-61.

16.See IAAF Rule

17.See IAAF Rule

18.An example of
an IAAF sanctioned event held in the United States is the Prefontaine
Classic, which is held every spring in Portland, Oregon in honor of
the late Steve Prefontaine. This competition is an IAAF Grand Prix event.

19.A similar bilateral
agreement, between CCES and the USOC, is expected to be signed in the
next few months.

20.The ability to
drug test another federation’s athlete has a “reasonableness” standard
built in to the provisions. A party to the agreement cannot drug test
an athlete more than twice, during the same visit, without the consent
of the other party. Thus, a federation cannot abuse their authority
to drug test another federation’s athletes.

21.Thus, if your
client were to be drug tested in Australia and the drug test revealed
the presence of a prohibited substance, your client would have the ability
to have a hearing before USATF, the athlete’s home federation. For more
information, see USOC/ASDA Bilateral Agreement, Section IV, Provision

22.It should be
noted that within the sport of track & field, of the 200 members of
the IAAF, only 8 have drug testing programs.

Section 9.1.

Section 6.20, IAAF 59.3, and USOC/ASDA Bilateral Agreement Section 4,
Provision 9.

25.The collection
of drug test includes dividing the urine sample into two (2) containers,
respectively known as the “A” sample and the “B” sample. The “A” sample
is always analyzed first. The “B” sample is only analyzed in the event
the “A” sample reveals the presence of a prohibited substance.

26.The USOC has
set forth a “due process” checklist that NGBs are required to comply
with. The list includes notice of the specific charges, reasonable time
between the receipt of notice of charges and the hearing, the right
to have the hearing conducted at a convenient time and place, the right
to be assisted in the presentation of one’s case at the hearing before
a disinterested and impartial body of fact finders, the right to call
witnesses and present both written and oral evidence, the right to cross-examine,
the right to a record of the hearing, the right to a written decision,
the right to written notice of appeal procedures. See USOC Constitution
and Bylaws Article IV, Section 4, (C)(6).

27.USATF was the
first NGB in the United States to out source its disciplinary process.
The USOC has recently indicated that they plan to follow in our footsteps.

28.Protected competition
includes Olympic Games, Pan American Games, Paralympic Games, a World
Championships competition, or other protected competition as defined
by Article I, Section 2 (H) of the USOC Constitution & Bylaws. See USOC
Constitution & Bylaws Article IX, Section 1.

29.An NGB would
first have to deny an athlete the ability to participate in a protected
competition. Thus, an athlete first would have had a hearing pursuant
to USAFT Regulation 10.

30.See USOC Constitution
& Bylaws Article IX.

31.See USOC Constitution
and Bylaws Article III, Section 5.

32.See Grievance
Procedures for Code of Conduct and Team Selection – 2000 Olympic Games.
These Grievance Procedures specify that the American Arbitration Association
(AAA) will handle any dispute that the Secretary General is unable to

Bilateral Agreement, Section IV, Provision 9.

34.See Grievance
Procedures for Code of Conduct and Team Selection – 2000 Olympic Games.

35.An additional
issue that arises, but is not discussed in this article, is whether
one organization may pursue disciplinary action after action has been
taken by the first organizations.

36.See IOC Olympic
Charter, Section 5.

37.See IOC Medical
Code Chapter VI, Article IV and Chapter III, Article I. Athletes agree
to use the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to resolve all issues
relating to disciplinary action that may arise during the conduct of
the Olympic Games.

38.See id

39.See IOC Medical
Code Chapter III, Article I.

40.See Grievance
Procedures for Code of Conduct and Team Selection–2000 Olympic Games.

41.Unless the competition
falls into one of the categories specified by the IAAF Rules. In such
case, the IAAF would be responsible for conducting drug testing.

42.See above note.

2016-10-12T11:43:04-05:00February 13th, 2008|Contemporary Sports Issues, Sports Management|Comments Off on A Journey Through Olympic Drug Testing Rules: A Practitioner’s Guide to Understanding Drug Testing Within the Olympic Movement

A Coach’s Guide to Recognizing Alcohol/Drug Problems Among Athletes

How do I know if one of my athletes is abusing alcohol, drugs, or both?

Assessing a potential alcohol or drug problem is a difficult and often frustrating process. Your influential role as a coach and a confidant, however, places you in a unique position to successfully reach a troubled student.

What should coaches look for?

There are many reasons why students may show the following signs and symptoms. The behavior may or may not be alcohol or drug related. When these behavior patterns occur with some regularity and are interfering with the student’s performance, it’s time to intervene.

Behavioral Patterns


  • Physically assaultive or threatening
  • Exaggerated self-importance
  • Rigid, inflexible, unable to change plans with ease
  • Incoherent, irrelevant statements
  • Excessive attention to routine procedure, almost making it a ritual
  • Frequent arguments
  • Frequent outbursts of temper
  • Frequent episodes of crying
  • Excessive amount of breaks at practice
  • Reports from peers who are worried about the person in question
  • Complaints from community regarding debts, rude behavior
  • Minor scrapes with campus or municipal authorities
  • Depressed
  • Withdrawn
  • Suspicious
  • Mood swings: high and low
  • Oversensitive
  • Frequent irritability with teammates and other students



  • Frequent minor injuries due to carelessness, lack of conditioning
  • Mishaps not related to sports
  • Frequent physical complaintsAthletic Performance and Patterns:
  • Assignments take more effort and time to complete
  • Difficulty in recalling instructions
  • Difficulty in handling complex procedures
  • Lack of interest in one’s game
  • Difficulty in recalling previous mistakes
  • Absent-mindedness, general forgetfulness
  • Coming to practices or games in an intoxicated or impaired state
  • Fluctuating periods of high or low productivity
  • Mistakes due to poor judgement
  • Complaints from others concerning her work or habits
  • Improbable excuses for deteriorating performance
  • Overall carelessnessAcademic
  • Poor reports from instructor or academic advisors
  • Lateness or failure to complete assignments
  • Listlessness or sleeping in class
  • Sharp fluctuations in classroom work
  • Evidence of cheating or using someone else’s work
  • Frequent cutting of classes
  • Excessive time spent sick
  • Misuse of excused absences
  • Unreasonable resentment to discipline or mistakes of others
  • Excessive lateness for practices, meeting, or after breaks
  • Increasingly improbable and peculiar reasons for absence
  • Absences after weekend, holidays, or other time off given to team

Strategies for Approaching and Helping a Student

If the student comes to your for help

  1. Commend the student’s initiative and courage for coming to you for help. This first step is one of the toughest.
  2. Listen. Listen. Listen. Allow the student to tell you why she thinks there’s a problem.
  3. Discuss options available for ongoing help. The student may want to continue talking to you, in which case you may need to set a limit on how long you can be put in this position. Encourage the student to seek professional help.
  4. Know the resources on campus: Alcohol and Drug Awareness Project x2616, Health Education x2466, Health Services x2121, Counseling Center x2307

    If you have reason to suspect a drug/alcohol problem

  5. Arrange a private meeting with the student.
  6. Develop a highly specific list of facts which substantiates your reasons for believing the student may have a problem.
  7. During your initial meeting with the student, express your concern based on the list of facts you have documented about behavioral changes.
  8. If the student denies there is a problem, continue monitoring his or her behavior. Approach the again in a couple of weeks. If there’s no change in behavior or if denial persists, you may need to consider stronger action.
  9. If the student acknowledges there is a problem, be prepared to suggest where she can go for help.

Key Points to Remember

  • Remember that the message you want to convey is: “There is a problem and I care.” (Note: Anticipate your own anger fear and/or disappointment, so that it can be controlled.)
  • Policies and procedures you follow must be consistent with all of your students.
  • Privacy and confidentiality are necessary to ensure trust.
  • Speak in terms of behavioral fact: weed out your personal judgements on personality, performance, etc. (Note: Avoid “labeling” the individual as an alcoholic or drug addict.)
  • Anticipate the student’s reactions; learn to expect:
    • Defensive reactions: denial, rationalization, blaming
    • Emotional reactions: anger, shame, embarrassment, hopelessness, despair, disappointment in self and support system

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Robin Harris, Mount Holyoke Health Educator, UMASS Athletic Health Enhancement Program, (414) 545-4588.

2013-11-27T16:26:14-05:00February 13th, 2008|Contemporary Sports Issues, Sports Coaching, Sports Management, Sports Studies and Sports Psychology|Comments Off on A Coach’s Guide to Recognizing Alcohol/Drug Problems Among Athletes

Student Athlete Drug Testing

Since the June 1995 U. S. Supreme Court ruling in support of random interscholastic student athlete drug testing, more schools then ever before have begun either mandatory, reasonable suspicion or voluntary types of drug testing as they battle drug abuse by their students. By far most student drug testing programs consist of mandatory testing of only student athletes since the U.S. Supreme Court upheld this type of testing. Some schools have begun drug testing all co-curricular students or students wishing to drive to school. This latter action was challenged in Rush County, Indiana, and upheld by the District Court. When appealed to the U. S. Supreme Court they allowed the District Court ruling to stand.

Schools contemplating a drug testing program must first document their student athletes are using drugs to comply with the U.S. Supreme Court ruling. Likewise it is imperative that they rally community support for such a program in order for it to be a helpful tool used both my school officials and parents. Urine drug testing is the industry standard and recommended over hair or saliva testing which may not be defendable in court.

Student Drug Testing Options

Drug testing programs can be mandatory, as with interscholastic student athletes, voluntary as part of a student assistance program, or based on reasonable suspicion only. Random urine drug testing by far is the most deterrent to drug use by students since the students may be selected at any time for testing. This type program gives the students another reason to say “No!” However such a program requires more testing be done which elevates the total cost of the program. Voluntary programs do help those students caught breaking the rules by using drugs or alcohol, but has little impact on students using and not getting caught. Reasonable Suspicion programs are very effective at keeping drugs out of schools but have little deterrence to use by students in general.

Drugs to Screen for

A student drug testing program must screen for the appropriate illicit drugs and banned substances. Most schools have student codes of conduct and/or athletic codes of conduct that state illicit drugs are not to be used and most include tobacco as a banned substance. The substance abuse coordinator from your school should be able to tell you what drugs or substances your students are using and abusing. This list will probably include Pre-Game Drugs like tobacco (smoked and chewed), marijuana, pain medications (often used with parent knowledge) and anabolic steroids. After games, the Post-Game Drugs will include tobacco, marijuana, alcohol, LSD, and inhalants. There are several “club drugs” that students are starting to use including ecstacy, a methamphetamine known as MDMA, and ketamine, a veterinary anesthetic. Ecstacy has stimulation and hallucinogenic effects and often used at parties called Raves where students dance wildly and often dehydrate from elevated body temperatures. Unfortunately one dose of ecstacy causes permanent brain damage. During a Rave a student may take as many as 15 hits of Ecstacy. Current urine drug testing can discover Ecstacy but only when ordered as a special test and at considerable expense. There is not a screening test yet available for Ecstacy or Ketamine.

Currently most certified laboratories offer a standard Substance Abuse Panel -10 (SAP-10) which screen for the following ten drugs:

  • Amphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines (Valium®)
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Methadone
  • Methaqualone
  • Opiates (Codeine)
  • Phencyclidine
  • Propoxyphene (Darvon®)

Many other chemical substances can be detected in the urine, and considering the drug use patterns of today’s youth, the following additional drug screens can be ordered:

  • Alcohol
  • Anabolic Steroids
  • LSD
  • Nicotine (Tobacco)
  • MDMA (Ecstacy)

In the laboratory, the SAP-10 is automated and therefore less expensive to do. The other drugs must be tested for by different methods or at special locations, resulting in higher prices. The typical school will pay from $25 to $50 for each SAP-10 ordered, with urine alcohol costing $6 – $10 each, LSD $22-25 each, urine nicotine costs $10-12 each, and anabolic steroids costing $80-95 each. For this price, you should get MRO services as well (see Medical Review Officer section).

Since the drugs abused mostly by teenagers today consist of tobacco, marijuana, alcohol and LSD, a drug abuse intervention program must screen for these chemicals. Simply doing the industry standard of a SAP-10 is not enough. However, detection of alcohol in the urine is not very reliable since it is eliminated from the body very quickly. A drug screen for alcohol done on Tuesday is not likely to find alcohol that was consumed on Saturday night. LSD also leaves the body very quickly and is hard to catch. Therefore, schools often do weekend collection to deter the use of alcohol by their athletes.

A Certified Laboratory is a Must

There are many laboratories, both local and national, who advertise the ability to do urine drug testing. However, not every lab uses the same methods nor are they all certified by the Government. Therefore, it is imperative that only Government certified laboratories are used for any student drug testing program. This is the only way you can be assured that your results are accurate. If your policy will deny the privilege to participate in sports or other co-curricular activities when a positive test is found, your school will be in really hot water if your results are wrong. Any lab your medical vendor uses must be certified by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration(SAMHSA) and should have a minimum of ten years of experience in toxicology testing and chair-of-custody procedures. Sport Safe Testing Service uses Quest Diagnostics, Inc. exclusive for testing due to their many years experience with athlete drug testing.

Analysis of Specimens

There are two levels of analysis that occur routinely with urine drug abuse screens. The sample is first subjected to an automated screening test that quickly looks for the presence of specified drugs or their metabolites. This initial testing uses a highly accurate immunoassay technique commonly called an EMIT®. All presumptive positive results should be confirmed by a Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectroscopy (GC/MS) confirmatory tests. This confirmation method provides a “molecular fingerprint” of the drug and/or metabolite, providing a high level of accuracy and specificity. The quantitative results, in nanograms per milliliter, are usually reported as well. Currently the GC/MS confirmatory test is the only acceptable industry standard for drug abuse screen confirmations. Thin layer chromatography, as sometimes offered by non-certified labs, is not acceptable.

Second-Hand Exposure

The first words out of a teen’s mouth when told their urine showed marijuana is that they were in a car with someone who was smoking and therefore that is why their test came up positive. It is very true that detectable levels of both THC (active ingredient of marijuana) and nicotine can be found in those individuals having close exposure to the smoke of the burning tobacco or marijuana. The urine of young children whose parents smoke will have detectable nicotine. For this reason, a series of cutoff levels has been determined and proven scientifically so when a urine drug screen is positive, we know it is from use and not second-hand exposure. For THC the standard is 20-50 nanograms (ng) per milliliter in the screening test and 15 ng/ml by GC/MS. Nicotine has to be above 300 ng/ml to be called positive. When a drug screen is reported as positive, the actual quantitative levels are reported to the Medical Review Officer. This data is becoming more important in determining recent use verses natural decay of levels in the body. The levels for nicotine are less standardized and often take careful interpretation by the MRO.

Medical Review Officer

A Medical Review Officer (MRO) is a licensed physician who has additional training and certification in the area of drug testing. Specifically they have learned how drug testing is done, what affects the results, specifically medications and foods, and how individuals will try and adulterate the specimens to give false negative results. A physician can be certified by the Medical Review Officer Certification Council (MROCC) or the American Association of Medical Review Officers.

Any program of drug testing involving students should have a certified MRO to review all results and make a final certification as to being positive or negative. The MRO must be willing to phone parents when a positive result is found to verify if any medication has been prescribed. This is very important since medications like Tylenol® with codeine could be legally prescribed for a student following a tooth extraction and that student having a drug test would be positive for opiates. The MRO’s job is to verify if any medication has been prescribed for the student which could have resulted in the positive result. If the MRO receives from the prescribing physician or dentist documentation that a codeine containing medication was prescribed, the MRO will rule the test negative. However, if the parent happened to give the student one of his or her pills, and the student has no legal prescription for the medication, then the MRO must rule this test positive since a controlled drug was given and taken without the order of a licensed physician. (Believe it or not, athletes, with full knowledge of their parents, have taken pain medications prior to athletic competition to make their overused joints hurt less during that day’s events). Having an MRO adds significant credibility to any program and shares the burden of liability the school is placed under. For more information and contact Sport SafeTesting Service, Inc., 18 Grace Drive, Powell OH 43065 or call (614) 847-0847. Sample policies are available on our web site at

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Dr. Joseph C. Franz, Medical Director, SPORT SAFE Testing Service, Inc., 18 Grace Drive, Powell, OH 43065. Phone/Fax:(614) 847-0874. Sample policies are available at

2016-04-01T09:57:44-05:00February 13th, 2008|Contemporary Sports Issues, Sports Management|Comments Off on Student Athlete Drug Testing