The USA Today's Christine Brennan takes on the issue of drug testing in golf and wonders how pro golf can brag about its integrity while running from any kind of testing program.
How he will know his Tour has "issues" without testing is a question that no one in sports has yet to figure out. Perhaps Finchem is the one man on earth who can.Remember, Dick, it's a paradigm shift driven by agronomy, maybe drivers, and mostly by improved athleticism (and definitely not the ball!). So the major role that athleticism purportedly plays means no one will try performance enhancing drugs! Nope, never.
Then again, one has to marvel at how much Finchem sounds like Bud Selig, circa the late 1990s. And we all know how things have turned out for baseball under his infamous leadership.
"It all sounds so familiar, doesn't it?" Dick Pound, head of the World Anti-Doping Agency, said Wednesday. "It's the old, 'We don't test because there's no problem' idea. Look at the way the (body) shapes are changing in golf. Are all of those drives landing so far down the fairway just because the balls are better and the equipment is better?"
Pound said he has talked with Finchem about drug testing. "I've told him, 'Don't wait for something to happen.' He says he doesn't want to be lumped in with all those baseball and football players and what they're doing. But it is disappointing that they've done nothing. They look around them and they see every other pro sport and what they're going through. It's being sort of blind to what's around them. It's such an opportunity for a sport that right now is enjoying success. This is an opportunity for golf to lead."
Hey, the USGA and R&A are up-to-date on transgender athletes, and they're hot on the trail of square grooves. That's leadership!
And a 2005 NCAA survey of a sampling of golfers indicated steroid use by 1.3%, amphetamine use by 3.5%, cocaine or crack use by 2.7% and marijuana use by 25%, according to the NCAA.
Think these numbers aren't high? Compare them to the Olympics, which we know still hasn't caught all its cheaters despite trying since 1972 with the most stringent testing of all. Less than half of 1% of U.S. Olympians test positive for performance-enhancing drugs. And golf doesn't have a problem?
Funny, but if they had equipment under control and power was not so vital, no one would be talking about this.