[u]The Dirty Grey Cup? Congratulations CFL, you went an entire season without drug testing[/u] PAUL FRIESEN, WINNIPEG SUN
[b]As Canadian football's marquee event approaches, congratulations are in order.
The CFL and its players union, so adept at polishing their public image through charity and community work, have managed to go an entire season without drug testing.
In a day and age when every major professional sport is trying to rid its game of drug cheats, Canada's homegrown loop has turned a blind eye, from the end of training camp to Sunday's Grey Cup.
All because of an ego that says “nobody tells us what to do? and a culture stuck in the past.
The league had gone five years with the weakest policy of any of the major sports, and had resisted behind-the-scenes calls for change.
The players were taking advantage of a policy that doesn't penalize or identify first-time offenders, two of the tenets of a strong program.
The head of Canada's only testing lab approved by the World Anti-Doping Agency said enough was enough: she could no longer in good conscience do the testing for the CFL.
Commissioner Jeffrey Orridge's response? Accuse the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport, which ran the CFL program and the lab, of a breach of trust.
Without even acknowledging there might be a problem, Orridge shut down the entire program.
Orridge must have thought this would be as easy as some of his other P.R. efforts: just dump the CCES, find another partner, make a few little changes and come out smiling for the cameras.
The problem is there are just two other WADA-approved labs in North America, and both of those told the Sun, and the CFL when it went calling, they couldn't work with a toothless program like the CFL's.
Months later, a league that prides itself on being part of the community has no idea how clean, or how dirty, its championship game will be.
Just one week into the season, Orridge, on his first visit to Winnipeg, said a new program was just weeks away, “at most.? Five months later, he'll likely address the issue again, this time before a much larger media contingent at his state-of-the-league address, Friday morning.[/b][url=http://www.torontosun.com/2015/11/26/dirty-grey-cup-congratulations-cfl-you-went-an-entire-season-without-drug-testing]http://www.torontosun.com/2015/11/26/di ... ug-testing[/url]
Good on Paul to keep this issue alive. :thup:
Wonder if he will slag on the National Felon League during Super Bowl week????? Probably not!!!!!!!!! :thdn: :thdn: :thdn: :thdn:
there will no doubt be at least some players who will take advantage of this opportunity to juice throughout playoffs and Grey Cup (as well as the regular season) while there is a void in testing.
just out of curiosity, could a player be reprimanded if he admitted usage after the fact even though a doping program was not in place?
Paul Friesen ?@friesensunmedia 13m13 minutes ago
[b]#CFL has crafted a new drug policy but I'm told players want some concessions. Aren't likely to get them.
#CFL was determined to address ALL concerns of CCES and WADA in new policy. Wants pressure turned to players now. Your move, CFLPA.
Old #CFL drug policy lacked in 3 key areas: stiff penalties for 1st time offenders, public disclosure and independent results management.
I'm told #CFL has put everything into the new policy that was lacking. We can only guess which area players are resisting.[/b]
Perfect timing Paul Friesen. It's been a tough year for the CFL in a lot of ways. But now, with Grey Cup just a couple days away, people are starting to feel the excitement of a potentially great game. Finally, a feel-good week in an otherwise forgettable season. What an excellent opportunity for a writer-hack to pile on the league. This isn't about Friesen "keeping the issue alive" as some here suggest. It's about a reporter seizing the opportunity to bring attention to himself.
I think it is a fair story - and now is the time to bring up this issue - when people are paying attention again - and not at a time the story would have been buried behind pages of other sports (like coverage of the Jays for example) - which would have been the case if we revisited this VERY important topic at some other time.
Early in the year the commisskioner said ‘weeks’ for a new policy. Well it is now months and the end of the season - a time when the commissioner has to talk about the state of the league. The lack of testing is a huge isue IMO - so it should be one of the fist topics asked about today at his season ending press conference.
I hear what you're saying but, with respect, I gotta disagree. Our whole lives are nothing but "issues" and serious stuff. This is Grey Cup week, a time to forget about issues and focus on the fun and excitement. Drug testing is a league matter that should be dealt with (if in fact, there is a "problem") but let them deal with it in January or even during spring camp. But why dump out the garbage on Grey Cup week when there are 51 other weeks in the year to work with?
you do not think drugs are a problem in pro sports?
Especially in a league that allows players carte blanche to use with absolute impunity?
doesn't seem very fair to those who refuse to cheat and lose their jobs to those who do.
After listening to the Commissioners presser this morning , he said the new drug policy has been drafted and it meets CCES standards , it is now in front of the CFLPA and it is up to them to approve it . I am sure they are going to want something in return .
didn't Commish Orridge say something very similar to this 5 months ago?..
CFL News ?@CFL_News
Orridge says CFL still working with cflpa on new drug testing policy, #sports #CFL
What I might "think" is irrelevant because I'm not in a position to say with any authority that players in the CFL are taking performance enhancing drugs. I'm not naive enough to believe that they don't exist in the league but I don't have any hard evidence nor do I have the mandate to gather any. So, all I have to go on is innuendo, rumours and the words of reporters like Paul Friesen. Which means I don't have the right to drag players into the court of public opinion. I believe we are still innocent until proven guilty, right?
My only point has been, let's forget about the "issues" of the game for this one week, and just enjoy this awesome event called Grey Cup!
Further to that, posted later this morning:
gary lawless ?@garylawless 2h2 hours ago
Oh please, he's been reporting on this all year every time there is something to report (like today), and even when there isn't (to point out that months had gone by with nothing happening).
The CFL's drug policy is such a joke that it's even been eclipsed by UFC, FFS. That's pathetic. Maybe you find that acceptable, but I find it bush league amateur hour nonsense and the commissioner has been a total failure on the issue all season.
If some media pressure holds his feet to the fire and finally gets some action? Good.
Well, judging by your reaction, you're the go-to expert on the current policy and who's taking what, and how they should or shouldn't be punished. And since you've made such an exhaustive study on the matter I have no choice but to bow to your expertise.
Try reading something, you'll get up to speed pretty quickly. The CFL is one of a very few supposidly serious organizations left that thinks pretending first time users don't deserve any kind of punishment is somehow okay. This all started back when university students were caught doping and were drafted into the CFL anyway, because as first time offenders the CFL would offer zero punishment.
That's all public record information. Comparisons to other league policies are all public record information. It's easy to go find out if you do something other than complain.
You don't sound like someone who gives good advice. Goodbye.
and the CFL is the go-to expert even though it is the only pro sports league to be without a drug testing program in place nor penalties for offenders?
the very same league that dropped the the only accredited lab in Canada and has been refused service by all other internationally accredited labs as well?
Yes, if you believe "reading something" is bad advice, that explains why you also think the CFL drug policy is anything other than a gigantic steaming turd of failure. The league and its players should be embarrassed.
Are we going to have a Dirty Combine?
The CFL 2016 Combine is on Mar. 11-13 in TOR, The 3 or 4 regional combines will be sometime before.
There is still no news on a new drug testing policy or an accredited lab to test the Combine invitees.
Last year 5 Canadian University players tested positive for PED's,
3 of those 5 were still taken in the 2015 draft. :oops: