Canadian receiver Mike Jones has tested positive for a banned substance and is facing a two-game suspension in accordance with the CFL’s drug policy.
The 24-year-old Jones, who is in his second season with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, tested positive for dehydrochlormethyltestosterone or “Oral-T”, a substance found in anabolic steroids and used in supplements.
Jones issued a statement through the Ticats:
“On Friday, September 15, following our game versus the Saskatchewan Roughriders, I was informed by the CFL Players’ Association that I tested positive for a banned substance called dehydrochlormethyltestosterone after a random drug test. I had never heard of this substance, and I have never intentionally consumed it. In fact, I had each of my supplements checked on two occasions (before and after), and each time they were deemed safe. I cannot say exactly how dehydrochlormethyltestosterone was found in my urine, but I am both responsible and accountable for what’s found in my body.
“I want to apologize to the CFL, CFLPA, Hamilton Tiger-Cats, and my family for the way this incident may reflect upon them. I will be sure to take additional steps to ensure I am putting safe supplements in my body so that this never happens again. Playing professional football in Canada is a privilege, and I would never do anything to jeopardize or tarnish the purity of the game of football in the CFL. Thank you to my loved ones for their support throughout this process.”
And the franchise added:
“The Hamilton Tiger-Cats fully endorse the Canadian Football League’s joint drug testing/substance abuse policy with the CFLPA. We believe in Mike as a person and player, and although his violation is extremely disappointing, we’re confident he will take the necessary steps moving forward to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”
Random testing is conducted by the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) year-round, according to the CFL. A player who tests positive under the new policy faces a two-game suspension for a first doping violation, second is nine games, third is a one-year ban and a fourth is a lifetime ban from the CFL. Any player testing positive is subject to mandatory testing thereafter.
Since the new CFL drug policy was instituted in April 2016, one current player has been suspended for using performance-enhancing drugs, Stampeders defensive lineman Quinn Smith. Five prospects had their draft year pushed to 2018 after doping violations. Former Bombers defensive back Bruce Johnson tested positive for a recreational drug – methylenedioxyamphetamine also known as MDA or “Sally” – as did Ticats receiver and returner Brandon Banks.
Jones was selected in the second round, 18th overall by the Ticats in the 2016 CFL draft. He played in eight games as a rookie, catching two passes for 27 yards. In 2017, the Southern University product has played in 11 games making 25 receptions for 267 yards.
Hamilton plays at B.C. in Week 14 and host Toronto in Week 15. Jones’ suspension takes effect immediately meaning he’ll sit out both those games.