Volume 94, Issue 47

Wednesday, November 22, 2000


Swimmers take gold - Lady Mustangs lead the way

Mustang wrestlers hit the mat

Hec Crighton hopeful test positive

Hec Crighton hopeful test positive

By Joel Brown
Gazette Staff

The Canada West nominee for the Hec Crighton Award, given to the top Canadian Intercollegiate Athletics Union football player in Canada, has withdrawn his name from consideration after testing positive for a banned substance.

Quarterback Shawn Olson, of the University of British Columbia, was suspended last week after high levels of ephedrine were found in his blood. The sample was taken Sept. 30 during a unannounced doping control session by the CIAU.

Olson attributed the high levels of the drug to a nutrient supplement he had taken.

The CIAU accepted his excuse and suspended him for three months, retroactive to the time of the test.

"This was not considered an ingestion of steroids," said CIAU chief executive officer, Marg McGregor. "The chemical analysis lets you know if it were steroid abuse or not. Shawn admitted it was his own carelessness and stupidity. He only looked half-heartily at the book of guidelines, regarding the ingestion of these substances."

Lenora Parker, manager of the Drug-free Sport Program, for the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport, said this was Olson's first drug test at the CIAU level.

UBC head coach, Jay Prepchuk, said he thought Olson had a good shot at winning the award. "I was a little shocked," he said. "Especially with the type of person that it was and who it was. But I'm glad he took the high road."

Prepchuk said his program has gone to great lengths to educate athletes on the dangers of using nutrient supplements. According to the coach, each of his players sat through a teaching session conducted by the team's trainers and were also reminded on a weekly basis of what not to take.

Initially Olson did not take the news about the positive drug test well, Prepchuk said. Although Olson could not be reached for comment, Prepchuk said Olson was upset. "He was very shaken and quite upset," he said.

Prepchuk has remained supportive of his athlete and helped to work him through the situation. "I told him whatever decision he makes we really know who the winner is."

University of Calgary runningback, Dean Fisher, replaced Olson as the Canada West nominee for the Hec Crighton.

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Copyright The Gazette 2000