Windsor, Acadia football players banned for drugs
Two more Canadian university football players have been suspended after their steroid use was detected in nationwide doping-control tests.
The results have prompted new rules and testing policies for university football players across Canada.
Christopher Deneau of Amherstburg, Ont., a second-year linebacker at the University of Windsor, tested positive for methyl-1-testosterone.
Deneau admitted to the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport that he had used steroids. He was handed a two-year suspension.
Taylor Shadgett, a third-year linebacker at Acadia University in Wolfville, N.S., tested positive for the steroid stanozolol. Shadgett, of Barrie, Ont., also admitted using the banned substance and was barred from university football for two years.
Testing after Waterloo scandal
The two players were tested and caught in the wide net cast by the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport and the Canadian Football League after a doping scandal at the University of Waterloo in May.
Several Waterloo players tested positive for steroids, and the school's entire football program was suspended.
The latest results came from random testing of 50 university football players in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport network.
"This is the first time a University of Windsor athlete has tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs," said Gord Grace, the university's director of athletics.
"We have a zero-tolerance policy and are fully supportive of the Canadian Anti-Doping Program."
Grace said the school requires players to take an online anti-doping course, and the zero-tolerance policy is communicated to all athletes "without exception."
Doping 'not an isolated occurrence'
"Naturally, we’re very disappointed in the results of the home visit tests, as they signal that doping in CIS football is not an isolated occurrence," said Marg McGregor, the CIS chief executive.
"We have significant work to do to address the problem in a systematic and comprehensive manner and to protect the integrity and positive values of university football."
The CIS is hosting an anti-doping symposium on Nov. 26 at the University of Laval in Quebec City in conjunction with the Vanier Cup.
The Centre for Ethics in Sport said it will immediately introduce new anti-doping measures for all university football players.
It is also launching a task force to investigate the use of steroids in football, including which banned substances are being used and how widespread the problem is.
The organization vowed more players would be tested, particularly in the off-season.
CFL promotes anti-doping message
The Canadian Football League has agreed to help the anti-doping campaign by identifying 80 top prospects among Canadian amateur football players and providing the money to test them.
The CFL has also agreed to launch a public education campaign targeted at minor and university football players, warning them against steroid use.
"Our sport, played with passion and integrity, is a tremendously positive influence on the lives of young athletes and the communities in which they live," said Kevin McDonald, the CFL’s director of football operations.
"As role models for football players at every level, those of us privileged enough to be part of the CFL are working to fulfil that responsibility."