Does the 'S' at USC Really Stand For Steroids? How Far Does It Go?

Larry BurtonSenior Writer IMay 9, 2010

Larry Burton (Panama City Beach, Fla.) Brian Cushing, a former USC linebacker who went from man boob physique to a WWF-type steroid physique in one summer, has many wondering if steroids have been a problem at USC.

Dave, who knew Cushing in high school said, "I knew this kid in high at Bergen Catholic. His Freshman year he was about six-foot tall and 170 lbs soaking wet. He came back for Sophomore year about 6′2″ almost 220. For those who said DeFrancos did it, (the weight lifting/strength coach Cushing worked with) you’re a ******* idiot, this kid has been using it on and off since HS. Don’t get it twisted, he always had talent, but you don’t gain 50 ******* pounds over a summer."

He has been recently tested and suspended four games by the NFL for use after his first year there.

There were rumors of Cushing failing an earlier test at the combines when he was just out of college.

According to John McClain in the article "NFL reacts to steroid reports linked to USC linebackers," McClain says the NFL has weighed in on the report by NFLDraftBible.com that USC outside linebackers Clay Matthews III and Brian Cushing tested positive for steroids. The league says players who tested positive were sent letters three weeks ago informing them they'd tested positive. Also, teams will receive the information next week.

But the Texans, in great need of a linebacker, took Cushing anyway.

McClain, who follows the draft closely said, "Every year, players test positive for something—usually steroids, supplements that are on the NFL's banned list or recreational drugs. Some have terrific careers and never test positive again. Others never produce.

"Teams usually don't downgrade players if they test positive for marijuana. It's different with players who test positive for steroids because it makes them wonder how much of what they've accomplished was because of the illegal substances.

"It always amazes me that prospects know months ahead of time they're going to be tested for drugs at the combine, and some are still dumb enough to get caught, but it happens every year. And it usually costs them a whole lot of money," McClain concluded.

Steroid use and USC have made the news together in lots of highly-publicised ways.

The Daily News reported that USC safety Brandon Ting tested positive for steroids as far back at 2006 and left the Trojan program.

Interestingly enough, an article "USC players quit over steroids, connection to Bonds?" they go on to note that Tings father, Dr. Arthur Ting, was subpoenaed and testified before a U.S. grand jury investigating steroid accusations surrounding baseball slugger Barry Bonds. Dr. Ting is Bonds' personal surgeon, specializing in orthopedics.

In 2003, Ting visited Bonds and trainer Greg Anderson, who spent time in prison for dealing steroids, at the BALCO offices to draw blood.

Dr. Ting was disciplined twice in the last 10 years by the California Medical Board for writing prescriptions with inadequate records and allowing others in his office to write prescriptions.

All of this raises two questions:

1) Did one or both of the Tings test positive for steroids supplied by their father?

2) Are there other USC players who may have received steroids from the Tings or their father? (end of "USC players quit over steroids, connection to Bonds?" speculation)

Kiffin, who seems to have grown up fast since his reckless rant days at Tennessee, may realize the thin ice USC is on and try and curb this problem once and for all.

That would be good for college football, and great for the USC Trojans.


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