Records show previous positive tests for UK athletes

vhoneycutt@herald-leader.comMay 24, 2009 

Jeremy Jarmon was not the first University of Kentucky athlete whose career was cut short because of a positive test for a banned substance. But he's certainly one of the most prominent.

One UK athlete was dismissed from a team between July and December of 2008 after a positive test for marijuana. A second athlete who tested positive for marijuana was simply penalized because it was a first offense, according to records of internal testing at UK Athletics that the Herald-Leader obtained under the Open Records Act.

The records UK provided were from the school's internal testing, not from the NCAA. Jarmon came up positive in a random test conducted by the NCAA. The substance was not disclosed.

Two UK athletes were dismissed in the 2007-2008 school year when their tests were positive for marijuana, records show.

UK officials did not identify the athletes or their teams.

During the 2006-2007 school year, there were 13 positive test results for marijuana and one positive for cocaine. During the 2005-2006 school year, there were 10 positive tests for marijuana. UK did not provide information about how many students the positive tests represented in those years or what disciplinary action they faced.

UK routinely tests for drugs such as amphetamines, barbiturates, prescription drugs such as Valium and Darvon, marijuana, cocaine, Quaaludes and opiates, according to the documents provided.

In addition, the policy says that UK may test for any NCAA-banned drug at any time.

Substances banned by the NCAA include anabolic steroids, stimulants, street drugs, diuretics and other urine manipulators, anti-estrogens, which are used to minimize the side effects of steroid use, and peptide hormones and analogs such as human growth hormone, according to UK's drug policy.

UK Athletics contracts with an outside firm to conduct testing, spending nearly $40,000 each school year. More than 500 athletes are tested each school year by UK.

Under UK's drug policy, any athlete who takes supplements or medication from any source must fill out a disclosure form.

UK discourages the use of supplements, its policy for 2008-2009 says. UK provides athletes some supplements but none containing substances banned by the NCAA.

"Student-athletes must be cautious of using supplements available through commercial outlets as many contain substances banned by the NCAA," the policy states. "Please use extreme caution when taking anything given to you or purchased from a commercial outlet. ... Bottom line: the student-athlete is responsible for knowing what is contained in any supplement that he/she takes."

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