Marijuana Use in College on the Rise, Says Drug Free SportOngoing drug scandals in college football, including marijuana use, continue to mar the 2014 season, much like previous seasons. In 2012, three LSU players reportedly tested positive for synthetic marijuana and were suspended from a playoff game. Georgia football player Branden Smith was arrested for misdemeanor marijuana possession. Four TCU football players were among 17 arrested in a campus drug sting. Coach Gary Patterson, in an effort to crack down on marijuana use, allegedly administered drug tests to the team on national signing day.According to Drug Free Sport, one of the country’s top drug testing providers, marijuana use is on the rise in both college and high school football. And it’s not just football. Nearly half of all male lacrosse players admitted to smoking marijuana in the last 12 months, according to a survey of anonymous college athletes. According to the 2009 survey, 26.7 percent of college athletes reported using marijuana at least once in the past 12 months, up from 21.7 percent in 2005.“Every 20-25 years you have these upticks in marijuana use,” Frank Uryasz, the president of Drug Free Sport, told ESPN in 2012.
University of Texas Leads College Athletic Programs with Strict Drug Testing EnforcementDrug testing to monitor and ideally prevent drug use is an important first step. Consequently, college football programs, like the University of Texas Longhorns, are stepping up drug testing. Under the leadership of Head Coach Charlie Strong, the Texas program is on pace to double predecessor Mack Brown’s previous annual rate of football player drug tests, according to ESPN. Data obtained by the Austin American-Statesman found that 188 drug tests have been administered during the first eight months of Strong’s tenure, compared to an average of 104 tests per year during the last three years of Brown’s tenure. The Texas’ student-athlete handbook for the 2014-2015 season states, “Players are subject to suspension for 10 percent of their season and counseling upon a second positive test. A third positive test would require a half-season suspension along with counseling, and the punishment for a fourth positive test is dismissal.”
Stopping Marijuana Use Starts with Strict No-Drug Policy EnforcementStrong’s no-tolerance policy is sending a firm message to players, and other coaches should follow suit. It is only by enforcing school drug policy and suspending or dismissing players, even if doing so hurts a team’s chances for season success, that college players will finally get the message that marijuana use is not tolerated.
Source http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/11586960/texas-longhorns-drug-testing-efforts-double-coach-charlie-strong http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/7982322/drug-headlines-college-football-make-last-season-one-forget http://www.cbsnews.com/news/police-seize-drugs-cash-from-alabama-players-kurt-freitag-room/ http://www.al.com/news/tuscaloosa/index.ssf/2014/10/alabama_football_player_caught.html
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