Juicing in the CFL

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Murdoch
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Juicing in the CFL

I didn'y really buy into the argument that the Bombers had no knowledge of supplements taken by Andrew Harris related to his suspension last season. I know there was lots of denials at the time by everyone going around. Seems to have faded away now.

The right move at the time imo would have been for the Bombers to impose a team fine as well as the suspension but that wasn't going to happen given th eimportance of harris to the team.

Just seems odd given the situation and the restrictions in place by the CFL that the team would leave it up to the player to decide on a supplement program on their own without a discussion. I would think that a trainer or therapist would be interested to know on behalf of the team and that it would be naive to think that guys hanging out in weight rooms aren't talking about supplements and ways to improve their performance. And yes the viagra excuse was one of the explanations.

If it was all just like the Bombers claim then maybe the CFL is the one who needs to impose stricter rules along the lines of losing a draft pick or a salary cap penalty. Perhaps they take an interest in what the players are doing on their own at that point.

Or throw it wide open but I don't see that happening.

So just curious what others might think.

I will admit there were a couple of occasions early last year where Harris flat out ran a cornerback and made me think that he still had amazing jump in his legs.


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Hambone
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Seems to me the way things were reported with Harris while it's easy to acknowledge he was guilty of what was supposedly a trace of a substance it's hard to make a case that it would make much of a difference.

1) It was the 3rd time he'd been tested in 2019 and the 2nd time in 10 days.
2) He claims he's been tested more times in his tenure as a Bomber than anybody else to the point it was a running joke in the locker room.

What becomes perplexing is:
1) Why would an athlete who frequently gets tested want to take a chance on willingly consuming something known to be in violation of the rules?
2) Or conversely did he willingly consume the substance taking that chance after being tested on July 2nd thinking he would not be tested again for a while?

As for team involvement I think they do their best to educate the players on these things but there's very little they can do to stop a player from consuming a product they may have come across simply in conversation with somebody else working out in the same gym. When one looks at the long list of chemical names for banned substances in the CBA it would take a lot of close scrutiny to cross reference the label with the CBA. Some of those chemical names are longer than one's arm. Ultimately however ignorance is not a valid excuse.

Having said all that I also don't believe an athlete who tested negative multiple times will take something and a week later suddenly be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. One would think it would take months of continued use to start making a difference. If in Harris' case that was true then why didn't he fail previous tinkle tests?

The only other thing I wonder is that while testing is supposed to be totally random did somebody see something in the July 2nd results like a reading barely under the limit that caused them to go back again so soon? That would turn it into a targeted test as opposed to random.


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Murdoch
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

No doubt the Bombers did everything they could to sway opinion including throwing an Andrew Harris bobble head night. The "trace" comment was something that did not come from official sources as no numbers were ever revealed to my knowledge.

All that said Harris is a heck of a player and him coming home to Winnipeg was the first step that ended in winning the Cup. Without AH33 there is no cup. He has been the heart of the team since he arrived.

At the same time, it was just a bit to easy for the Bombers to say we didn't know. That's why if they were fined or penalized they might make it their business to know what their players are doing. The team itself could do some testing if they were held responsible and had doubts.

As for all the testing it needs to be on a random basis or else players will find ways around it. If Harris thought he was done after test #2 he was wrong on that. Good for the CFL to not be played like a fool plus a big message sent to the other players.

Not likely to change.


Murdoch
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

I'm not trying to dis AH. His suspension being recent and well publicized it comes easily to mind. I think the Ottawa long snapper was caught as well. Lost pick for the team and maybe it doesn't reoccur.

On a positive note I will say that in addition to Harris being an outstanding player he does the best td celebrations. The elephant march and the bobble head two of his best to date.


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Sir Purrcival
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Murdoch wrote: Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:53 am
At the same time, it was just a bit to easy for the Bombers to say we didn't know. That's why if they were fined or penalized they might make it their business to know what their players are doing. The team itself could do some testing if they were held responsible and had doubts.
This is always the part that seems hard to accept. I would put it more down to willful blindness rather than true ignorance of the facts. This is football and there are a lot of incentives to skate close to the edge (see how I mixed in a hockey metaphor there). And I honestly think that there would be a very easy fix for the knowing and not knowing. Simply put the onus on the players to present to team trainers any supplement they are taking. If they take something new, it goes to the trainers first for their blessing. Need a cold medication, have the team provide a list of acceptable over the counter products. If the player gets caught with a banned substance, then the player is busted because there would be no question about whether or not the player "knew". They wouldn't have to know. They simply have to make sure that what they are using passes muster with the team. It makes far more sense to have a team "expert" on what is onside and offside rather than make individuals try and navigate the myriad of choices of supplements and medications that are available for use or conversely banned.


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Hambone
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

I would at least hope whether Harris willingly or unwittingly consumed whatever led to the positive test he will be uber-careful about taking supplements in the future. Now that he's been caught once he's subject to mandatory testing for the rest of his career. Next time the punishment will be 9 games. After that it's a full season. He's at an age that when he takes his next tinkle test he could literally be pissing away his career if it comes up positive.


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Toppy Vann
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Last word about Sept 21 was Harris seeking to find out what happened.

Nothing I can see since on that front and maybe for two reasons:

1. he can't find proof of his claim of potential cross contamination.

2. They won the freaking Grey Cup and possibly he has been told just to let it go.

But in defence of Andrew Harris is former CFL player and now his HC Mike O'Shea. Doubt he'd defend the guy if he had doubts as he knows the CFL and how players do or don't do stuff.

https://montrealgazette.com/sports/foot ... tly-states


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Murdoch
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Toppy Vann wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 10:33 am But in defence of Andrew Harris is former CFL player and now his HC Mike O'Shea. Doubt he'd defend the guy if he had doubts as he knows the CFL and how players do or don't do stuff.
https://montrealgazette.com/sports/foot ... tly-states
You would think that, given the aura of Mike O'Shea. A man among men.

The entire Bomber corporate culture is very much of an "omerta code" type environment. Weird coincidence that they have taken to the "Canadian Mafia" moniker.

My guess is that MOS knew full well all the details related to the Euclid Cummings incident in Vancouver of a couple years ago, as did Kyle Walters, Wade Miller and likely 50 other members of the organization. They wouldn't have bothered to inform the stupid woman chairman of the board they stuck in fantasy power.

More than a year later when the news breaks due to the Lions doing a pre-employment screen we are told Euclid chose to stay over due to the following week being a bye week when the truth was he missed the plane because he was in jail. Then they brushed it off as the season being over, only to not mention dressing him in the playoff game. They did claim to having informed the league office, passing the buck unverified. They did nothing and said nothing. Life was good. They never made so much money.

It's a bit of a sore spot. I apologize for the rant.

I get how a young guy can get in trouble fast, but to think that a culture exists where the behaviour that lead to the incident being acceptable is nothing less than an extremely loose code of ethics. To sweep it under the rug and not be truthful with Bomber fans and citizens of the community owned teamed is disrespectful to say the least. Treating fans as fools is a quick way to loose customers imo. I understand there were some pretty serious allegations.

Unfortunately imo these are the people who are running the Bombers.

Anyway, just my opinion and you decide for yourself. I would have jumped in front of a bus with my Bomber gear on for Cal Murphy but not this crew. They are more loyal to people from Guelph than Winnipeg which is another issue.

The untied shoes and scruffy beard is another story.


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Toppy Vann
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Murdoch wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 3:16 pm
Toppy Vann wrote: Tue Feb 04, 2020 10:33 am But in defence of Andrew Harris is former CFL player and now his HC Mike O'Shea. Doubt he'd defend the guy if he had doubts as he knows the CFL and how players do or don't do stuff.
https://montrealgazette.com/sports/foot ... tly-states
You would think that, given the aura of Mike O'Shea. A man among men.

The entire Bomber corporate culture is very much of an "omerta code" type environment. Weird coincidence that they have taken to the "Canadian Mafia" moniker.

My guess is that MOS knew full well all the details related to the Euclid Cummings incident in Vancouver of a couple years ago, as did Kyle Walters, Wade Miller and likely 50 other members of the organization. They wouldn't have bothered to inform the stupid woman chairman of the board they stuck in fantasy power.

More than a year later when the news breaks due to the Lions doing a pre-employment screen we are told Euclid chose to stay over due to the following week being a bye week when the truth was he missed the plane because he was in jail. Then they brushed it off as the season being over, only to not mention dressing him in the playoff game. They did claim to having informed the league office, passing the buck unverified. They did nothing and said nothing. Life was good. They never made so much money.

It's a bit of a sore spot. I apologize for the rant.

I get how a young guy can get in trouble fast, but to think that a culture exists where the behaviour that lead to the incident being acceptable is nothing less than an extremely loose code of ethics. To sweep it under the rug and not be truthful with Bomber fans and citizens of the community owned teamed is disrespectful to say the least. Treating fans as fools is a quick way to loose customers imo. I understand there were some pretty serious allegations.

Unfortunately imo these are the people who are running the Bombers.

Anyway, just my opinion and you decide for yourself. I would have jumped in front of a bus with my Bomber gear on for Cal Murphy but not this crew. They are more loyal to people from Guelph than Winnipeg which is another issue.

The untied shoes and scruffy beard is another story.
Not sure your spin on the Bombers is correct as you put this into too much of a black and white / good or bad with no gray area for an equally probable explanation.

We need to be mindful of the presumption of innocence in a civil society. That is supposed to be a fundamental tenet of our justice system.

Just a year ago, the meekest, mildest friend of mine got charged with sexual assault on his wife who the week after getting divorce papers brought in the police. While not convicted he's had to sign a document that says she has a genuine fear of him despite the fact that he had to leave his house, his cancer laden elderly mom behind and move out as the RCMP appeared on his door step as a surprise. Months later his only contact was via their divorce lawyers. We have a very low bar in some sexual assault cases these days. The days I was in policing it was too far the other way. Now we need to let the evidence in court speak to the issues.

I now can't find charges on the court website (maybe he has a different name).


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Murdoch
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Point well taken. Won't add any more to the speculation other than to say MOS vouching for Harris is something I might take at less than gospel. Wade Miller is the one in that situation that should have stepped up. Sorry about your friend and his troubles.


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Hambone
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

Toppy Vann wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:42 am
Not sure your spin on the Bombers is correct as you put this into too much of a black and white / good or bad with no gray area for an equally probable explanation.

We need to be mindful of the presumption of innocence in a civil society. That is supposed to be a fundamental tenet of our justice system.

Just a year ago, the meekest, mildest friend of mine got charged with sexual assault on his wife who the week after getting divorce papers brought in the police. While not convicted he's had to sign a document that says she has a genuine fear of him despite the fact that he had to leave his house, his cancer laden elderly mom behind and move out as the RCMP appeared on his door step as a surprise. Months later his only contact was via their divorce lawyers. We have a very low bar in some sexual assault cases these days. The days I was in policing it was too far the other way. Now we need to let the evidence in court speak to the issues.

I now can't find charges on the court website (maybe he has a different name).
The whole Cummings thing had quite a convoluted timeline where it's entirely conceivable the Bombers knew nothing even for a while after charges were laid. There's enough cracks in the timeline for things to fall through.

The Bombers played BC on Oct.14th. The incident supposedly happened in the wee hours of Oct.16th. The Bombers were going into their bye week so players were free to go wherever they wanted after that game. Majority would have gone back to Winnipeg on the flight home. Some may have chosen to stay in Vancouver to depart to wherever they were going to spend the bye week. Cummings chose to stay in Vancouver thus was not with the rest of the team.

Charges were not laid until the following April. By that time Cummings was no longer a Bomber. He'd signed with Edmonton in free agency. I don't recall if Cummings had originally been arrested and released at the time of the incident or not until charges were actually laid. As such I don't know if he was even aware he was being investigated. Certainly there was no reason for authorities to discuss with his employer so unless Cummings fessed up to them they'd be none the wiser. I'm thinking if he was aware of what was going on he likely would have kept it to himself hoping nothing would come of it.

Regardless when he was finally charged he was an Eskimo, signed ironically by Ed Hervey who would sign him in BC the following free agency. At the same time by the time he was charged Hervey was no longer with Edmonton having been fired a couple weeks earlier. Again were the Eskimos or CFL made aware at that time? Whose responsibility is it to find such things out? I'm thinking it's not up to the police or courts to tell an employer. I'm not sure employers find themselves obligated to go sleuthing around court records to see if one of their employees has been up to no good. That leaves it to the employee, or perhaps his agent if Cummings even told his agent. Considering Cummings likely knew if this came to light it would likely cost him his job I think he would have tried his hardest to make sure nobody knew anything for as long as he could hold it a secret.


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Toppy Vann
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

C harges like these charges don't come immediately typically unless the police arrive to a beaten up victim with the assailant right there. I tried to look them up online and like I said unless his real name is not euclid, I can't see there are outstanding charges in BC.


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cms22
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Re: Juicing in the CFL

i'm waiting for one person in any sport to say "yes, i'm guilty. i juiced to get competitive advantage"..... and not years after allegations and/or positive test.


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Re: Juicing in the CFL

cms22 wrote: Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:31 pm i'm waiting for one person in any sport to say "yes, i'm guilty. i juiced to get competitive advantage"..... and not years after allegations and/or positive test.
That will happen when Donald Trump admit that he's been lying the past 4 years.


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Re: Juicing in the CFL

TheLionKing wrote: Sat Feb 08, 2020 9:20 pm
cms22 wrote: Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:31 pm i'm waiting for one person in any sport to say "yes, i'm guilty. i juiced to get competitive advantage"..... and not years after allegations and/or positive test.
That will happen when Donald Trump admit that he's been lying the past 4 years.
otoh, there actually are innocent people in jail. Every once in a while they let one of them out before their time is up.


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