NCAA Considering No Longer Testing For Marijuana To Focus Solely On PED Testing

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From the “it’s about time” department comes a story out of the NCAA. A medical committee is recommending that the college sports governing body stop testing athletes from marijuana and remove cannabis from the banned substances list.

According to CBS Sports, “The Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports recommends shifting focus to testing for performance enhancing drugs. The committee intends to seek support from the NCAA Board of Governors to temporarily stop testing for cannabis at NCAA championship events while legislative action is considered.”

CBS Sports notes that this does not guarantee the NCAA implements the rule. All three levels of competitive competition — Divisions I, II, and III — must pass new legislation. That’s not a guarantee.

However, with more states passing legal marijuana laws, this seems only a matter of time. Plus, marijuana is not a substance that gives athletes a competitive advantage.

The NCAA Logo is shown as athletes competes in the men's 10000 meter run during the Division I Men's and Women's Outdoor Track & Field Championship.
The NCAA Logo is shown as athletes competes in the men’s 10000 meter run during the Division I Men’s and Women’s Outdoor Track & Field Championship. (Photo by C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

Turning their focus to drugs that DO create competitive advantages allows them to use resources more properly.

NCAA, professional sports leagues increasingly heading toward allowing players to consume marijuana

This comes as professional sports leagues start to turn the corner on marijuana. The NBA, for example, recently allowed players to smoke marijuana as part of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

The NFL does not allow it as part of their banned substance list. However, many NFL players partake in the drug and manage to get around testing procedures — in most cases.

And, the league relaxed its rules on marijuana, though not completely allowing it.

At the end of the day, college athletes are adults. If marijuana is legal in their state and doesn’t provide competitive advantage, why ban it?

Players that are at least 21 years old can drink alcohol. They can use tobacco products over the age of 18.

It’s not the leagues’ job to legislate the behavior of adults, as long as it doesn’t impact the competitive balance.

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Written by Dan Zaksheske

Dan began his sports media career at ESPN, where he survived for nearly a decade. Once the Stockholm Syndrome cleared, he made his way to Outkick. He is secure enough in his masculinity to admit he is a cat-enthusiast with three cats, one of which is named “Brady” because his wife wishes she were married to Tom instead of him.

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