Football: CCES, Waterloo overkill counterproductive, in many ways

The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport's latest bit of overkill — quit milking this! — just goes to show it and the University of Waterloo have done harm than good.

Andrew Bucholtz over at The 55-Yard Line has taken a broader look at former Warriors running back Matt Socholotiuk's positive HGH test. You might recall there was idle wondering why the Warriors' leading rusher hadn't surfaced as a transfer or been quoted about the season being shut down.

Another place to take this is to note how CCES' witchhunt and Waterloo's overreaction have smeared anyone who ever wore the black and gold with the 'roider brush. The wastes of space at one Toronto media outlet ran a random, uncaptioned Warriors shot that wasn't even of Socholotiuk (it was Jordan Verdone). Translation: they're all guilty.

In the view of London, Ont.-area high school coach John Kublinskas, the coach of another outed player, Spencer Zimmerman-Cryer, it has too much stickiness. And it's only going to be linked to one school.
"Kublinskas said this situation will have ramifications down the road — and not just for the player.

" 'This is hiring stuff now,' he said. "[Zimmerman-Cryer will] always be attached to this. We (Waterloo football alumni) will always be attached to this now, too. I'm 10 years removed and I'm still attached to this.' — London Free Press
By the same token, there is an argument that warning athletes a drug test might affect them in the job market might be an effective deterrent.

Telling someone that bad press will stay on the Internet in perpetuity and that employers do Google applicants' names might cause someone to toe the line. That does not cross over into people who tested clean, point being.

There needed to be some collective sanction of the Waterloo team. Former receivers coach Carl Zender and the players might have erred with their passionate plea by not communicating what they were prepared to do as penance. Now it's stuck to everyone, all so Waterloo admins can feel good and the self-justifying CCES can push their agenda to suck up a few dollars from the federal government.

Please try to see that shit runs downhill: they're using the little guy. Canadian university football might have trouble getting people to respect the Vanier Cup, but the CCES has turned this into its Super Bowl! They're feeding the public's convenient fake concern about performance-enhancing drugs, since because it's CIS, they're not ruffling as many of the big corporate sponsors who partner with the National Hockey League, Canadian Hockey League and Canadian Football League.

And who wears it? The 85 per cent of Waterloo footballers who tested negative.

The upshot is, and thank goodness, we've seen some excellent fan support so far this season in the OUA (8,000-plus at Western, 6,000-plus in Ottawa, around 5,000 at McMaster). Perhaps it has "cast a shadow over the entire Ontario university season," as Ryan Pyette noted, but if it's not reflected in the spectator turnout, then has it really?

Who knows, maybe if Waterloo had shown real leadership, booted the bad apples and said it would play, people would have welcomed them back.

Meantime, is spiking a season really going to work? Mike Esposito, Zimmerman-Cryer's summer football coach, is a little dubious:
"What aggravates me about all this is it's academia making the decision (to suspend the Waterloo football program for a year). You've got a few players doing a selfish act — and Spencer is one of them — but you just punished a bunch of innocent kids. Does everyone go to jail just because we have a few murderers?

"Go and test at every university and you'll find players testing positive at every one of them. But what this does is tell the kids to keep quiet. They could have used this to make a valuable education point by telling those kids who were clean, 'You guys are the ones we want.' To me, it was an absurd decision."
Yes, this is getting like an iPod stuck on repeat; apologies for that, but that's why browsers have the scroll function. Let us get it through our collective head that shutting down a season and playing to PED paranoia is not one and the same with developing a cost-effective HGH test.

Positive tests scratching surface (Ryan Pyette, London Free Press)
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  1. Reggie, sorry for having to delete your ignorant and ill-informed comment, but when a story CIS-related is in the news, it has to be commented upon.

    That's how it works. You seem to think I called the press conference.

    We were just responding to how CCES has milked this for far more than its worth, and how many in the media settle for regurgitate press conference talking points instead of asking, "Is this really worth it?"

    Hopefully, we don't have to talk about it again, but that would require the grandstanding CCES to stop holding press conferences, and the moralizing drive-by media to stop showing up.

    Thanks for writing. Next time, don't attack the author, and your comment will be left up. That means something valid about the story, not attacking the author.

    Sorry we couldn't accommodate you this time. Come back soon and stay well.

  2. And another delete of my post.
    Again I ask you to tell me how I attacked you?

  3. I apologize that your post couldn't stay up. It seemed like all you were interested in was venting at the author. You mischaracterized what I've said (I've gone on record saying I support CIS expanding testing, so how can I think "everyone is wrong?") and you oversimplified it.

    Plus, as people so often do when they don't have a leg to stand on rhetorically, you tried to play the I-speak-for-the-majority card, i.e., "everyone is SICK of this." Think for yourself, man.

    I talk to a lot of people in CIS circles and while they're sick of this, that doesn't mean we just stand idly by and let the mass media only give the CCES' self-serving version of reality.

    And what do you mean by another deletion? Perhaps another writer here took something down one time, but he would have done that independently on his own.

    Thanks for writing. I don't want to have to write another Waterloo post any more than you probably wish to read one. You're right that it's a dead horse, but we just want to get it across CCES has made university football a whipping boy.

  4. In fairness, might have been better to focus just on the "hiring stuff" aspect. Should have narrowed it down; trouble was both Andrew and myself are employed by another website now. I know I just have to get an angle and go.

    You know the saying, it takes a long while to make the story short?

    The hiring stuff aspect is a good angle.

    It sucks that former Waterloo players years removed from school have this attached to them.

    By the same token, imagine a coach telling his 18- and 19-year-old frosh, "if you test positive, it will be out there." I don't like some of the ramifications, but when you're spending $50,000 for a degree you hope will help land you a good job, maybe that would make people think twice.

  5. I understand what you're saying. I enjoy reading your posts, and while I don't always agree, I do like how you write.

    You're correct, as opposed to syaing "everyone is tired of hearing this" I should've kept my complaints to myself and said that I was tired of it. However, if you were to poll the readers on this site about whether they would like to continue reading columns about this situation I bet I would be in the majority.
    I just left that anytime there was anything in the newspaper about this, you would rehash it all again without much new information.

    As for the another post was deleted - I had written a second post that reorganized what I said, perhaps more politically correct, and asked you to tell me how I was being ignorant, ill-informed, and attacking you. Bringing you down was and is not my intention. I think we both want the same thing - to have a higher standing for CIS sport.

    On a side note, I would like to speak with you offline about a few things. Do you have an email that I can contact you on?

  6. Reggie,

    Thank you for clarifying. I overreacted a bit, but in all honestly I only took down the first one. I can't explain the confusion.

    Agree to disagree on the rehashing. If I was going to rehash I would have just said, "Positive HGH test," and left it there.

    Instead, I tried to talk about something related. I had talked with other people privately about the "hiring stuff" point.

    It is a good one since it could affect the innocent, but it could also maybe keep people on the good side of the rules.

    (I read Waterloo's entire report and that was never mentioned, by the way.)

    Also, seeing one outlet run an uncaptioned photo of a Waterloo player who tested negative (Verdone) set my blood to boiling, you understand. The reason I know it was Verdone is because I recalled he wore No. 44; Socholotiuk was No. 35.

    It's probably not up to me to counter all this. Perhaps we should do a poll saying, you want any more Waterloo posts? I also doubt you can just cut off posting on one story.

    By the way, neatesager{at)yahoo(dot)ca

  7. You know that Lionel Messi wouldn't be arguably the best soccer player in the world if it was not for HGH...

  8. Remember reading that; thanks for jogging my memory.

    He was given it to have a better chance of reaching regular adult height, though, not so he would become a world-class soccer player.

    HGH doesn't improve athletic performance. It's been lab-tested.