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September 21, 1988 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1988-09-21

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vs. Wake Forest
Saturday, 1 p.m.
Michigan Stadium


Field Hockey
vs. Kent State
Saturday, 10 a.m.
Tartan Turf

The Michigan Daily

Wednesday, September 21, 1988

Page 7

Adam's Rib,
NFL drug enforcers...
...questionable calls
Imagine approaching your car after a hard day's work and noticing a dent
'the size of a crater. Recently, the NFL found a Dent the size of a 275-
pound Chicago Bear in its official drug policy.
The policy has already nabbed many superstars in this still young 1988
season. Celebrated players such as Lawrence Taylor, Dexter Manley and
Charles White have been suspended for 30 days for having traces of drugs
found in their urine.
Less than two weeks ago, the NFL announced the latest of their
suspensions. The league stated that Chicago Bears running back Calvin
Thomas and perennial All-Pro defensive end Richard Dent must sit for 30
days. Thomas was guilty for traces of cocaine and marijuana, and Dent was
whistled for not taking the test.
Not taking the test? A player gets 30 days for not taking a test? Haven't
they finished college yet? Someone call Perry Mason. Get Della Street on
the line right away. Let's go to court.
STEVE ZUCKER, Dent's lawyer, filed an immediate injunction to
allow Dent to play in the Bears' second game against Indianapolis. One day
after the suit was filed, the league dropped the suspension and scheduled a
special hearing before NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle to settle the issue.
Dent had taken an initial drug test on Aug. 1 with the rest of the Bears
and had not shown any trace of drugs. But the league decided to test Dent
again because of previous "drug-related incidents."
After being specially tested in May and then again with his team in
August, Dent refused to take the latest test on Aug. 23, administered
because of "reasonable cause" on the part of the NFL.
It was this "reasonable cause" that prompted the first challenge to the
league's drug policy and forced Rozelle to make a decision. It was also this
"reasonable cause" that spurred controversy and many questions about a
previously vague policy.
Can the league infringe on an individual's rights because of "reasonable
cause?" Who decides what is "reasonable cause?"
WHITE WAS SUSPENDED for alcohol abuse when he was
'previously caught for using cocaine. Isn't alcohol a legal drug?
The Bears' Thomas was suspended because he had failed a previous test
that he claims he never knew about. When Bears president Michael
McCaskey was asked to show documentation of Thomas being notified, he
couldn't, thus questioning whether Thomas was ever warned.
But even with people crying personal foul over these other two
incidents, it is the Dent scenario that is crucial. If people can be tested for
the league's "reasonable cause," then these other cases don't matter.
It is obvious that players know how to get around being caught in drug
tests. Taylor documented how he carried around another teammate's urine
'in an aspirin bottle in his athletic supporter to beat the routine Giants drug
test. Something definitely needs to be done.
Rozelle met with Dent personally last week and retracted the 30-day
suspension with the guarantee that he would subsequently agree to take all
drug-related tests. But Dent won't be the only one to challenge the all-
powerful NFL's very weak and porous drug policy.
And if the league isn't wary, it could get clipped.


Olympics should open
its doors to all athletes


During the tenure of International
Olympic Committee (IOC) President
Juan Antonio Samaranch, there has
been a trend toward allowing
professional athletes to compete in
the Olympic Games.
To some, this trend has been
alarming because they feel the
original intent of the Olympics is
being violated. Others, including
Samaranch, believe the IOC must
face the realities of the times by
including professionals in the
Samaranch's stance is appropriate
when considering the changes in the
Olympic movement since the
modern Games began in the 1890s.
The Games have become a multi-
million-dollar business. For the
1988 Summer Games, $5.47
million is the projected figure for
television revenue alone.
In addition, there is more money
spent by corporate sponsors for
individual athletes, and in the case of
Eastern Bloc countries, money is
supplied by the governments.
THE ATHLETES also do not
mind receiving "material resources"
from sponsors or governments. The
fact that many Olympic athletes
make a living as a result of their
sport makes the notion of
amateurism in the Olympics a
hypocritical one. People who have
listened to Carl Lewis sing know he
must be making a living some other
Furthermore, the athletes are
given incentives to participate not
just for the love of their sports, but
to win. Governments, sports
federations, and corporations lavish
cash, houses, cars, and even
exemption from military service to
the winners in the Games.
Another apparent hypocracy is in
the way in which professionals can
compete in some Olympic sports
like ice hockey and tennis and not in
others such as basketball.

amateurism goes back only to the
1890s, whereas the tradition of the
original Olympic Games goes back
to the days of the ancient Greek
civilizations. In these games the
athletes were professional soldiers
competing in soldierly events such
as javelin throwing, wrestling, and
foot racing.
If the Olympic movement was to
adhere to this tradition, then
professionals should be allowed to
compete in the sport of their
Who is to say by what tradition
the IOC should follow? In the
absence of a clear, just answer to
this question, maybe complying
with the times is not such a bad
EVEN IF the IOC allows all
professionals to compete in the
Olympic Games, all will not be lost
for the diehard supporters of
amateurism. In sports like baseball
and hockey, and perhaps basketball
and tennis, there will most likely
never be total professional
participation because of conflicts
with professional seasons and
events. The Tigers, however, might
not be too reluctant to lend Homero
Hernandez (Is that his name now?)
for a stint in the Games.
The state of the present-day
Olympic movement warrants that
professionals should be allowed to
compete. This would promote a
greater degree of fairness in the
Games and allow for the eradication
of the biggest contradiction in the
Olympic movement without
irreparably damaging the future of
the Games.
The spirit of true amateurism is
no long present in the Olympic
Games. With this in mind, the IOC
should once and for all let the world
see its greatest athletes competing in
what is perhaps the greatest
showcase of athleticism.

A Associoted Press
Olympian Carl Lewis is one athlete who benefits from the
International Olympic Committee's professionalism policy.

Although the current trends
indicate that it will probably be best
to allow all professionals to compete
in the Olympic Games, proponents
of amateurism claim by letting
professionals participate, tradition is

being violated and that the Olympic
movement is swaying from its
original intent.
IN THE REALM of history,
this is a very modern view of
tradition. The tradition of

If you've ever dreamed of being behind the controls If you're cut out for it, we'll give you free civilian

of an airplane, this is your chance to find out what
it's really like.

flight training, maybe even $100 a month cash while
you're in school. And someday you could be flying

A Marine Corps pilot is coming to campus who a Harrier, Cobra or F/A-18.
can take you up for trial flights. Get a taste of what life is like
We're looking for a few f _ L A 11 at the top. The flight's on us.

Stop by and see a Jostens representative,
Mnnday Sant 1-thru FridayS ent 92


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