This Brian Cushing story has finally become interesting, and all it took was alleged masturbation and a roomful of old white people to make it happen. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
Cushing is the Houston Texans linebacker who, in his rookie season last year, earned Defensive Rookie of the Year honors and a spot on the All-Pro team. But that was before he failed a drug test, and now suddenly there’s Cush-Lash all over the place [emphasis added].
Here it is: Brian Cushing tested positive for slightly elevated levels of hCG (a non-steroidal substance produced naturally by the body).
More hCG: it is in seminal fluid and slightly elevated levels can be discovered in the event that a test occurs soon after ejaculation. –@Adam_Schefter.
Here comes the science: Human chorionic gonadotropin is used as a masking agent in the process of cycling steroids through the body. PFT points out that it’s the same substance that caused Dodgers outfielder Manny Ramirez to test positive in 2009. Ramirez was suspended for 50 games, because baseball is touchy about that sort of thing.
And they’re not the only ones. The voters of the AP have decided to reconvene and take another vote on that Defensive Rookie award that Cushing won last year. It’s an unprecedented measure.
Cushing admitting that he appealed the positive test in February makes it virtually certain that he derived benefit from whatever illegal substance he took during his rookie season. And if this suspension is the result of a positive test at any point during the 2009 season, I’m in favor of stripping him of the defensive rookie of the year award and giving it to second-place finisher Jairus Byrd of Buffalo. These are awards lorded over by the Associated Press, not the NFL, so this is not an NFL decision. –Peter King/SI.com
This strikes me as insane. The football writers and their God complex has finally reached critical mass.
This isn’t Barry Bonds smashing the home run record on the cream and the clear. This is a kid who might have just been jerking off before failing a test that nobody really seems to understand. The test doesn’t prove that he did any “performance-enhancing” (Dear God, how I hate that phrase), only that he came short of some arbitrary parameters set forth by the NFL and the players.
That the AP sees fit to bury Cushing on that alone just reeks of arrogance. Someone needs to explain how Peter King’s burning desire to stitch scarlet letters on every single player that doesn’t kiss his ass like Tom Brady can roll on unchecked. Their votes shouldn’t serve as a device to push their own fuzzy bunny agenda of eradicating steroids from sport, because that will never happen. Guys will dope, and guys will get caught, but we’ll never have perfect information. But, hey, we have to hammer down the guys that do get caught to send a message to everyone else. Such enlightened logic.
I hope that Brian Cushing got a worthwhile pop out of all of this, regardless of whichever needle he was stroking to get it.