Thursday, February 28, 2013
My name is Jarrett Sutton, and I am a former student athlete at the University of Missouri. While at Missouri, I was selected numerous times for random drug tests. The whole time thinking, “What is the point? I’m clean.” I also took part in our athletic department administered drug test we had to complete every year. Speaking from personal experience, all athletes hate to do a drug test. It’s time consuming, it’s a hassle, and you never want to be the person who gets randomly selected. After being at Drug Free Sport for a month, I can assure you that drug testing is vital in the protection of not only the sport, but the health and well-being of student athletes. Sure, it may be a hassle. But the reality is it’s important!
As a former student athlete, and as someone who participated in multiple random drug tests, I know first-hand what drug testing is all about. A drug test is not trying to punish student athletes, or trying to ruin an athlete’s athletic career. A drug test is conducted to keep the integrity of not only the sport, but the student athlete, intact. We are out to give all student athletes a fair playing field, where cheating and doping are banned at the highest level. We want the integrity of athletics to remain clean, and to protect the health of our student athletes for years to come. A work ethic, staying active with exercise, and promoting a healthy lifestyle are the tools to being the best athlete you can be. Cheating is a first class ticket to ruining not only a playing career, but life outside of sport. Drug Free Sport is here to protect the interest and integrity of what athletics are all about. With being an athlete come stress and pressures. As an athlete, at any level, we are pushed to perform at the highest level on and off the field. This sometimes pushes athletes to participate in drug, alcohol, and supplement use. It’s important to stay on track, keep a clear head, and always remember to do things the correct way.
Testing is a necessary and effective drug-use prevention tool to develop athletes who are committed to success on and off the field. Athletic participation is a privilege, and athletes cannot be allowed to abuse drugs at their expense, the expense of their teammates or at the expense of their sport. Research shows that most athletes are drug free. Therefore, we at all times treat athletes with dignity and respect. There are multiple resources around student athletes to go to for help. You have your coaches that can be a great resource to go to first. You can go to your athletic director for help, or in most cases, your athletic trainer who knows the harm alcohol, drugs, and supplement use has on your body.
The National Center for Drug Free Sport (Drug Free Sport™) is a company devoted to preventing drug abuse in athletics. As the premier provider of drug-use prevention services for athletic organizations, Drug Free Sport provides strategic alternatives to traditional drug-use prevention programs. More importantly, Drug Free Sport is a SPORT drug-use prevention company. Unlike traditional third-party drug-testing administration companies that conduct primarily workplace and insurance testing, Drug Free Sport works exclusively with sports organizations and their athletes. The National Center for Drug Free Sport, Inc. was founded in 1999 by Frank Uryasz, previously director of sports sciences for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). Drug Free Sport was created because there was no national entity that focused on the specific needs of sports organizations. Many organizations tried to conduct their own drug testing, using inappropriate workplace models. Moreover, sports organizations needed specific, student-athlete targeted testing, as well as independent drug-testing program management. Drug Free Sport has developed a number of programs to help institutions evaluate and implement effective policies. Our Speakers Bureau provides expert advice, pertaining to athlete safety and fair game, to student-athletes, athletics directors and athletic trainers.