Dr. Gary Wadler on the NFL, Steroids, and Roger Goodell
Gary I. Wadler, M.D., FACP, FACSM, FACPM, FCP, is an internist with special expertise in the field of drug use in sports. He is the lead author of the internationally acclaimed textbook, Drugs and the Athlete. Dr. Wadler currently serves as the Chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) Prohibited List and Methods Sub-Committee and serves as an ex-officio member of WADA’s Health, Medicine, and Research Committee. Additionally, he has served as a Medical Advisor to the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, a Trustee of the Board of the American College of Sports Medicine and of the Women’s Sports Foundation. Among his other sports medicine activities, he has served as Tournament Physician of the U.S. Open Tennis Championships.
For his groundbreaking work in the field of drug abuse in sports, Dr Wadler received the International Olympic Committee's President's Prize in 1993. He is a frequent lecturer on the subject and his opinions are widely sought by the print and electronic media nationally and internationally. In 2007, he was selected by the Institute for International Sport as “One of the 100 Most Influential Sports Educators in America” and serves Chairman of the Communications and Information Committee of the American College of Sports Medicine. In addition, he is Chairman of the American Ballet Theatre's Medical Advisory Board where he oversees the development of medical guidelines for the healthy and sound training of dancers in the United States. Dr. Wadler is the Chairman of the College Council of the State University of New York at Old Westbury. Dr. Wadler maintains a private practice in Internal Medicine and Sports Medicine in Manhasset, New York and is a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at the NYU School of Medicine.
Question: What advice would you give Roger Goodell?
Gary Wadler: Well, baseball, of the professional sports, baseball is- excuse me, football is first in line to begin to address this. Baseball’s caught up quite a bit. I think there’s one key factor is I think I would tell Roger Goodell that he should be proud of their history, but it’s passed them by. And what they need to do is outsource it to an independent, transparent agency, whether it’s USADA or some other one and get out of the business and let the chips fall where they land. Otherwise, we can take individual elements, whether this drug and this frequency of urine and observe. I mean I could take the whole thing apart. And, you know, the code itself is this thick and the documents that go along with the various aspects of the labs and collecting specimens and notification and sanctions and stuff. It’s a very complicated business. I would tell Roger Goodell as I would tell Bud Selig, “Look, you made a valiant effort. It’s passed you by, you know? We recognize you’ve made significant incremental changes. You’ve done things by opening up collective bargaining and grievance. I understand all that. I’m not naïve. I also am not naïve in the belief that unless it’s externalized and it’s gonna be done the way it needs to be done and to rid those sports of drug abuse.”
Recorded on: 04/25/2008
History has passed them by, says Wadler.
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