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Alabama issues statement on deer antler spray story from SI

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(Filed under: Hilarious headlines this world needs more of) 

When Sports Illustrated released a feature yesterday about multiple athletes, including at least one Alabama player, using performance-enhancing products from the supplement company, S.W.A.T.S., the inevitable question was if/how Alabama and/or the NCAA would react. Among the products allegedly used was a spray that contained IGF-1 from deer antlers, a substance banned by both the NCAA and the NFL. S.W.A.T.S co-owner,Christopher Key, told ESPN Wednesday that he witnessed about five Crimson Tide players using the spray last year.

Via, Alabama released a statement confirming that 1) the university has been aware of the situation for quite some time and 2) sent a pair of cease-and-desist letters to the company.

“UA has been aware of this situation for some time, and we have monitored this company for several years. They have twice ignored cease and desist letters sent by our compliance office. We have maintained consistent education of our student-athletes regarding the substances in question and will continue to do so.”

Here are links to both letters, sent in 2009 and 2012, respectively.

“We further request that you refrain from any future contact with any of our current student-athletes,” Alabama compliance director Matt Self wrote in the 2012 letter “Any future contact should be directed to the coaching staff, the athletics training staff, or the compliance office. Additionally, we ask that you not give or sell any product to our student-athletes. If they wish to use your product, they should obtain them through the athletic training staff and under the supervision of the athletic training staff.”

Again, it’s not likely any punishment will come out of this latest story surrounding S.W.A.T.S. Rather, and as anticipated, those involved have been reminded what they are and aren’t allowed to take and from whom.

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59 Responses to “Alabama issues statement on deer antler spray story from SI”
  1. whoisthatteam says: Jan 30, 2013 2:32 PM

    And the coddling of alabama continues. Not only do they magically end up with the easiest schedule in the SEC, they don’t even get a slap on the wrist when its been proven they’ve cheated.

  2. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 2:50 PM

    @whoisthatteam …

    You are such an ass. It’s been proven Alabama cheated? Really? By whom?

    Some morons tried to sell stickers laced with deer antler spray to our players to place on pulse points before a game. That in your pitiful pea brain is cheating? And the allegation–with no comment from the kids, no photos, no nothing–is proof? Yeah, I’d want you on a jury if I were accused of a crime.

    Alabama did what schools are REQUIRED to do. Their compliance department repeatedly responded to the incident and reported it to the NCAA. They did not lie about it (as Jim Tressel did) or sweep it under the rug. If Tressel had reported the tattoo stuff, Ohio State wouldn’t have gotten into trouble, either. These incidents happen constantly in the NCAA, and as long as the schools report it, they’re okay. That you and the people who agree with you don’t know that only demonstrates your ignorance of how college football works.

  3. kozbee says: Jan 30, 2013 2:51 PM

    We will find a way to blame ND.No issues here in the south.Has Teo ever tried it.

  4. cometkazie says: Jan 30, 2013 3:00 PM

    I was gonna say this will bring the ‘Bama/SEC haters out, but I see that has already happened.

    Good response, Deb, as usual.

  5. gatiger says: Jan 30, 2013 3:21 PM

    Notre Dame could have bathed in Deer Antler Spray and still not come close to beating Bama.

    Its not the spray that’s winning them championships. Its getting the best players and getting the most out of them, as much as this Tiger hates to admit it.

  6. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 3:21 PM

    He does have a point about scheduling.

    How many tough games do you see on this schedule? I see 2.

    So much for the SEC being the “best conference in football”…

    Oh, did I just poke the SEC knuckle dragger bee hive???

  7. alligatorsnapper says: Jan 30, 2013 3:23 PM

    If Teo ever tried, he would have lied about meeting it face to face, or maybe smoking it, but not inhaling, or something like that.

    Stupid story. Unsubstantiated.

    Maybe another story is soon to come that Alabama kidnapped a leprechaun and has him buried on the campus at Tuscaloosa?

    Guess that is all part of being successful, being the champion, and the wannabees and jealous will be taking pot shots.

  8. stairwayto7 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:26 PM

    Mark Emmert do your job! Take away all wins since 2007, 3 year bowl ban and loss of schoarlships!

  9. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:26 PM

    @gatiger…couldn’t have said it better.

  10. Irootforaconferencebecausemyregionsucks says: Jan 30, 2013 3:32 PM

    I really hate it when people say we need to slap asterisks on our national titles, but I understand why they think that is the proper punishment. They’re kinda right.

  11. nightman13 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:32 PM

    The deer antler spray contains a banned substance and is ingested, not sprayed on a sticker.

  12. jaydm84 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:33 PM

    IGF-1 can not be effectively taken orally, so unless they prove these guys or Lewis were injecting it, I’d say this is all meaningless.

  13. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:37 PM

    I guess nobody bothered to read the actual story…oh why bother…oh yes Dixie, the infamous “weak” schedule argument…which is it ppl? deer antler spray, paying players,oversigning, unicorns, the easter bunny…..RTR

  14. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 3:39 PM

    Hey Jason. Did you actually look at Alabama’s schedule for next year?

    I am not saying Alabama isn’t good. They are wicked awesome.

    Just funny that their schedule doesn’t look that tough. Right?

  15. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 3:55 PM

    Serious question: outside of the SEC, which involves playing your division with a set rotating schedule of which teams from the other division you play, do teams get to decide their schedules week-by-week, ensuring there’s an adequate level of competition every week?

    If it were up to me, Alabama would play a Top 10 team every week. But everybody understands why that can’t happen, right?

  16. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 3:58 PM

    Yes, everyone gets that Mr. Rolltide.

    The problem is SEC Fan keeps reminding us that the SEC is the “Best Conference in America”.

    I say it has the best team every year, but it has its fair share of duds and plenty of average teams. Much like the Big 10, Big 12, Pac 12, etc.

  17. lasseter1113 says: Jan 30, 2013 4:11 PM

    As an Alabama fan I have kind of been expecting something like this to pop up. None of our fans have killed any trees or tea-bagged anyone lately so I guess Deer Antler Spray was the next logical step. Anything to try and slow down this unstoppable train. I’m just relieved there is nothing to this. It’s just another feeble attempt to hurt Bama’s image right before NSD. All this story amounts to is something for the haters to feed off of. So now it’s rednecks, tree-killers, tea-baggers, grey shirts, and deer antlers? Right? Yawn…..

  18. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 4:21 PM

    @Dixie…never said it was. RollTide510 is right…I’d rather play a top 10 team every week too…but that cant happen.

  19. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 4:23 PM

    Sorry Jason. Didn’t mean to lump you into the group of SEC chest thumpers.

    Is that dude that can bench 600+ coming back next year?

  20. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 4:40 PM

    mydixienormus says:
    Jan 30, 2013 3:58 PM
    Yes, everyone gets that Mr. Rolltide.

    The problem is SEC Fan keeps reminding us that the SEC is the “Best Conference in America”.

    I say it has the best team every year, but it has its fair share of duds and plenty of average teams. Much like the Big 10, Big 12, Pac 12, etc.

    I’d like to hear your arguments as to why the SEC isn’t the best conference in America. They can even be butthurt arguments involving oversigning and admission requirements if you’d like, I’m just curious as to what you’re working with here.

  21. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 5:02 PM

    Here’s my argument:
    – KY
    – MS
    – Old Miss
    – TN
    – Auburn
    – Missouri
    – Arkansas
    – Vandy

    That is 60% of your “Best Conference In America” that was average or below in 2012.

    The other 30% is good.

    The remaining 10% is really good.

    Any questions?

  22. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 5:02 PM

    @Dixie…where ARE you going with this? SOS is another weak argument to me because the pre-season poll is a complete waste of time. That being said 7 straight championships from one Conference is dominance…

  23. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 5:03 PM

    @nightman13 …

    It may be ingested, but our players are alleged to have had it on stickers applied to pulse points on their bodies.

    From Sports Illustrated: “And then Key passed out his remedy for the frequencies: stickers, which he calls chips, bearing holograms of a pyramid. Key told the players that on game day they should place the chips on three acupuncture points — one on the inside of each wrist before they tape their arms (the chips also come embedded in bracelets), and one over the heart.”

    Did you jackasses even bother to read the article to see what our guys were alleged to have done before declaring it’s been PROVEN that Alabama cheated? Naaaaw :roll:

  24. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 5:11 PM

    After another championship from Bama in 2013, it will be alien DNA…just calling it now haters…

  25. armstrongsmissingball says: Jan 30, 2013 5:19 PM

    So Deb what you are saying is if you cheat and fess up you can get by with it. OHHhhh that is how it works. So lance gets his 7 back. NCAA is up the SEC a$$. you too how does it smell up there? If it walks like a duck….

  26. hercstar says: Jan 30, 2013 5:22 PM

    It may be ingested, but our players are alleged to have had it on stickers applied to pulse points on their bodies.

    The company that says it provided deer-antler spray, a product that contains a banned substance, to Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis also sold its goods to members of the 2012 national championship Alabama football team, according to a co-owner of the company.

    And Christopher Key, the SWATS co-owner, told ESPN’s Joe Schad on Wednesday he personally witnessed about five Alabama players spray what he sold them into their mouths.

    “I showed them how to use it,” Key said.

    From espn. Who is the jackass now Deb? Can’t wait for your backtracking on this one. You….are a joke.

  27. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 5:26 PM


    Don’t other conferences have crappy teams in their bottom half as well?

    I’m confident that not only could the top 3-4 teams in the SEC easily beat the top 3-4 teams in the conference of your choice, but the same would be true of the bottom 3-4.

  28. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 5:32 PM


    That doesn’t change the fact that you can’t administer that particular substance orally, as doctors have confirmed.

    I think Deb’s point though is if a company has two products, and one of them is stickers that make you play football better by blocking cell phone signals, but ONLY after they’re charged with a magic light beam, chances are their other product is BS too, right?

  29. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 5:39 PM

    @hercstar …

    The allegation regarding the Bama players was that Heckle and Jeckle tried to sell them stickers coated with deer antler spray to apply to their wrists and over their hearts to help them counter bad mojo during games. That has nothing to do with the subliminal product.

    Cortisone is a corticosteroid used to treat inflammation. It has nothing to do with anabolic steroids used to enhance muscle growth. You don’t punish one player taking cortisone because another took and anabolic steroid. I don’t care what Ray Lewis is alleged to have done with a subliminal deer antler product, that has nothing to do with the product the Bama players were alledged to have used … genuis.

  30. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 5:48 PM

    @armstrongsmissingball …

    Sugar, this isn’t the Tour de France. This is NCAA football. Try to stay on point.

    All football teams have compliance departments charged with dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s of NCAA regulations. If they find that some nefarious character–like the Heckle and Jeckle of hormones here–are trying to tempt their kids to do something that’s prohibited or even smacks of behind prohibited, they send cease-and-desist letters, scream at the kids, and tell the NCAA all about it. That’s the rule. And some nefarious character is always trying to tempt the kids to do everything from eating at their restaurant to using their power protein shake to wearing their good luck rosary beads during games. It’s a neverending cycle affecting all teams.

    The NCAA is worried about teams that pay players in various ways, teams whose training departments give them banned substances or turn a blind eye to them taking banned substances–they’re worried about institutional corruption. When a team learns that a player has gotten an advantage and makes no effort to address it, stop it, or inform the NCAA, that is a problem. Teams that are constantly staying on top of this stuff–as Bama has done here–are generally okay.

    This really isn’t rocket science. Nor does this stuff only apply to Bama or the SEC.

  31. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 5:49 PM

    Nothing like slamming a guy by calling him “genius” but misspelling it. Well, that’s mine for the day LOL

  32. Woody Bass says: Jan 30, 2013 6:54 PM

    Ummm you seen UGAly’s schedule?

  33. kattykathy says: Jan 30, 2013 7:00 PM

    There could be 10,000 people that would tesify that they all saw Bama players doing something illegal,unethical, immoral or even cheating.

    Deb will still make excuses and dream up a defense for them.
    No objectivity = no credibility

  34. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 7:02 PM

    So kattykathy, it would be safe to assume you’re in the camp of people that feels Alabama’s success is related to drinking deer juice?

    No right or wrong answer, just curious.

  35. kattykathy says: Jan 30, 2013 7:15 PM

    No, it would not be safe to assume that.

  36. rolltide510 says: Jan 30, 2013 8:14 PM

    I dunno kathy, you seem mad. I’ll bet there’s a sticker you could place on the inside of your elbow that would fix that.

  37. jason1214 says: Jan 30, 2013 9:24 PM

    @Kattykathy…or maybe a spray that would help

  38. 305fan says: Jan 30, 2013 9:44 PM

    Death Penalty!!!

  39. gamustangdude says: Jan 30, 2013 9:49 PM

    @ Dixie

    Your argument makes no sense. Your Argument against the SEC is that they have bad teams as well? Sure does every other conference. Vandy was a 9-4 team, that’s not average, they won their bowl game. Mississippi state was an 8-5 team. Missippi was a 7-6 team that won its bowl game. I’ll give you the rest of them, however Vandy, MS, and Ole miss, we’re maybe average SEC teams but better than average statistically. The fact that you are not getting is that if you rank the SEC teams 1-14 and match them up with other conferences teams ranked 1-whatever and pair them up where the SEC 1 would play X conference 1, and so on and so on. the SEC on paper would look overwhelming strong against other conferences. The fact that the SEC went 6-3 during the bowl season is a plus. You do a lot of SEC trolling for someone who’s a Washington Huskie fan. Maybe I should start trolling on Huskie threads, oh wait, there are none. Good game against LSU this year, 41-3 huh? So close….nail biter.

  40. mydixienormus says: Jan 30, 2013 10:08 PM

    You misspelled Husky…

  41. irishdodger says: Jan 30, 2013 10:48 PM


    You’re claiming Vandy, Ole Miss & MSU are above average statistically based on W/L? Vandy & MSU didn’t have one win over a team with a winning record in the regular season. They also both got beat by double digits by the same B1G team in Northwestern. Ole Miss was 6-6 in the regular season w/ a bowl win over another 6-6 team…that’s the definition of average.

    Bama is clearly the class of the SEC the past three years. LSU & UGA seem to always find a way to lose the big game despite elite talent that other teams would kill for. If you’re a fan of Socialism, I guess it makes sense to claim championships a fellow conference member earned while over half the league couldnt get bowl eligible….spread the wealth just like Obama preaches!

  42. gamustangdude says: Jan 30, 2013 10:49 PM

    Really? Or maybe I forgot the “s” it is the Washington HuskieS right?not Washington Husky? That’s where you should have gone with it. Or maybe, like your football team, it’s irrelevant, you still get the point.

  43. damonpsu says: Jan 30, 2013 10:50 PM

    “rolltide510 says:Jan 30, 2013 5:26 PM


    Don’t other conferences have crappy teams in their bottom half as well?

    I’m confident that not only could the top 3-4 teams in the SEC easily beat the top 3-4 teams in the conference of your choice, but the same would be true of the bottom 3-4.”

    I would say that Louisville and Clemson have something to say about that… and Michigan played South Carolina very well that game and could have one. However, all the focus was on that insane hit by Clowney. The SEC is the best conference, but not by as much as some people would have you believe.

  44. Deb says: Jan 30, 2013 10:57 PM

    @rolltide510 …

    No, you shouldn’t assume kattykathy has even read the articles. S/he just showed up on PFT one day attacking me personally in sexually based posts. Then s/he showed up here one day blasting me and the Tide. S/he’s never indicated an affinity for any team of his/her/its own, any particular interest in the sport, nor any reading comprehension regarding John and Ben’s articles or my posts. It’s just a bizarre little groupie … one of those weird things you encounter now and then in the vastness of cyberspace. Ignore it.

  45. gamustangdude says: Jan 30, 2013 11:18 PM

    1. I’ve never claimed any championship.
    2. Ole missed finished their season with a 7-6 record. Any way you try to spin in, that’s still above .500. It’s simple math, learn it. I could care less who teams lose to or beat, you see how overrated ND was, obviously W/L records didn’t mean squat there. Unless every team plays every team, arguments like “who team X beat vs who team Y beat,” is pointless. ND is a perfect example, they went 12-0 and lost 42-14 to Alabama, hell Ole Miss put up a better fight. Find me 1 conference with teams that can compete with Alabama, UGA, South Carolina, Texas A&M, LSU, and Florida. Alabama was the cream of the crop this year, LSU won last year, Auburn before that. Matter of fact goggle the last time 1 team won back to back SEC titles. That’s why the SEC is tough, not because of 1 team but match our teams up against any other conference teams and it’s a not a contest. PAC-12, Big 10, ACC, Big East, and the Big 12 don’t have 6 teams in their individual conferences that can match those 6 teams mentioned above. And if you say they do, in terms of college football, you’re an idiot, at least in my opinion. How’s that “socialism,” for ya?

    One last thing, SEC had 9 teams playing bowl games, unless 5 other teams joined the SEC that I’m unaware of, that’s more than half.

  46. oruacat2 says: Jan 31, 2013 2:27 AM

    It’s simple, really. If the SEC is weak and full of cupcakes, as is being alleged here, these “battle-hardened” teams from supposedly stronger conferences should be able to win the championship with more regularity. Right?

    ‘Bama, LSU, Auburn, Florida – by the time these teams survive an SEC regular-season schedule, it’s their BCS bowl opponent that seems like a cupcake.

  47. omniusprime says: Jan 31, 2013 8:49 AM

    Alabama cheats and the SEC and NCAA always look the other way. No wonder the Cheating Tide wins so much, they cheat with impunity! Sanction Alabama NCAA!

  48. mydixienormus says: Jan 31, 2013 9:11 AM

    Hey oruacat2.

    Did you know that LSU and Florida lost their bowl games?

    Did you really mention Auburn as a shining example of SEC power? We are talking 2012 here dude.

  49. mydixienormus says: Jan 31, 2013 9:22 AM


    Note that the SEC has 14 teams. More than all the other conferences.

    I would hope they have more teams in bowl games…

    The Big 12 has 10 teams. They had 9 teams in bowl games.

    Also most of the SEC plays the weakest non-conference schedules around. A few exceptions exist in the SEC, but not many.

    That helps SEC teams get 4 easy wins. Then you beat 2 SEC average teams (KY, TN, Auburn, MS, etc.) and you are in a bowl game. Congratulations.

    MS State was a great example this year. Went 7-0 then reality strikes and you get slammed in your bowl game by a Big 10 team.

  50. gamustangdude says: Jan 31, 2013 10:39 AM


    1. ” The Big 12 has 10 teams. They had 9 teams in bowl games.”

    They went 4-5 during bowl season, SEC went 6-3.

    2. “Also most of the SEC plays the weakest non-conference schedules around. A few exceptions exist in the SEC, but not many.”…”Then you beat 2 SEC average teams (KY, TN, Auburn, MS, etc.) and you are in a bowl game. Congratulations.”

    replace “SEC” with “Major Conferences” then you’ll be just as accurate, but unbiased.

    Oregon played what top ranked OOC team during the regular season? = None, Stanford beat which big program during the regular season San jose St? really? What about Florida State? Kansas State? You can slap the same weak ass argument on all the major conference OOC schedules, not just the SEC. Show me any team in the top final top 15 that didn’t play weak OOC teams. That applies to all conferences, not just the SEC. Next

    3. “MS State was a great example this year. Went 7-0 then reality strikes and you get slammed in your bowl game by a Big 10 team.”

    Still, The SEC went 6-3. We don’t win them all, never claimed that, but we win most of them, in this case 66%. Matter of fact out of the 6 major conferences the SEC was tied for having the highest win percentage (with the ACC who only had 6 teams bowling) exiting the bowl season. So Your 1’sies and 2’sies, don’t tell the entire story, just the side you choose to focus on. Worry about your “Husky” football team, ok? Not SEC Football. You make the same arguments everyday and honestly you could put Big-12, PAC-12, or anyother major conference in the same catergory as the SEC.

    Every one talks about the SEC Schedule, without looking at other conference OOC schedules for comparison. SEC is doing what everyone else is doing. Take the blinders off guy.

    since we’re posting random weblinks

  51. lovinthatsomanyhateonnd says: Jan 31, 2013 12:39 PM

    one thing notably absent is a denial their players took it. Interesting all they say is they have sent cease and desist letters. Its kind of telling if you read between the lines

  52. jason1214 says: Jan 31, 2013 12:56 PM

    @lovin….I see so because the players don’t deny it, that means they are guilty? I guess cause the NCAA hasnt commented either we’ll assume they have some failed drug tests too.

  53. jonanthans says: Jan 31, 2013 4:03 PM

    Manti Teo had a relationship with the deer that the spray was made from…
    Atleast he thinks it was a deer…….
    could have been a moose……
    never actually met it………

  54. Deb says: Jan 31, 2013 5:50 PM

    lovinthatsomanyhateonnd and omiusprime …

    What you and your cohorts seem to have missed is that no one has accused Alabama’s players of violating NCAA rules or cheating at anything. So there’s nothing for them to deny. If you were more familiar with the sport, you might be on top of this.

    Yes, we all love our teams, and I’ll defend mine when Ben writes an article filed under “Hilarious Headlines” but the lynch mob is too busy tying its knots to even grasp the reason for that reference. However, I’ve also defended other teams from Ohio State to Notre Dame to LSU to Auburn against unfounded accusations or mountain-from-molehill sanctions. And I’ve never gotten my jollies from dogging another commenter just for the heck of it. But … whatever gets you kids off.

  55. vstar1us says: Jan 31, 2013 10:59 PM

    I guess that is why they are horny

  56. bamafan36 says: Feb 1, 2013 8:30 AM

    I love it when people start trying to connect the lines from Kentucky and Mizzou, to Alabama, LSU, aTm, Florida, and UGA. To say that we are NOT the best conference, seems a lot like Bill Clinton saying “what is the definition of ‘is’?” It is preposterous! The best team from the Big10 got thrashed by the third best team from the PAC3. The bottom of the barrel in the ACC, received a bowl game waiver from the NCAA….and whipped the pre-season #1….from the PAC3. The BCS computers had OSU ranked #5 in the final BCS poll….due to SOS.

    As for our “cupcake OOC schedule”? Ask Georgia State is that game is meaningless. They have been playing football for three years, now. Because of the generosity of SEC Schools playing (and paying) them, they now have enough money to join a conference. When B1G schools play OOC, they are playing great teams like Miami of Ohio, Pitt, and Notre Dame……you know……absolute POWERHOUSE’S!!!! LOL

  57. mydixienormus says: Feb 1, 2013 9:25 AM

    Don’t forget that SEC teams play 4 out of conference games while the Pac 12 plays 3.

  58. tideman60 says: Feb 4, 2013 10:08 AM

    “Sports Illustrated first reported the connection between SWATS, an Alabama-based company, and several SEC programs.
    Key said he sold about 20 bottles of deer-antler spray to LSU players before the regular-season meeting with Alabama that year. Key said he has also provided healing hologram “chips,” which are stuck to the body, to Auburn players during their national-championship season and this past season sold healing “bands” to players at Ole Miss and Georgia.”
    The most prolific words ever spoken were by Bear Bryant, Pat Dye and a couple more coaches, there is not one school that doesn’t do something wrong. The problem is covering it up. Bama has been talking to the NCAA since they 1st found out about this.

  59. tideman60 says: Feb 4, 2013 10:17 AM

    mydixienormus; Yes I have a question. Why do you not comapare the conferences to each other. The top teams and the bottom teams. Why don’t you historically compare them? Not use just one year to make your silly argument. Auburn, Tn, Ole Miss and even MS had off years. But take the history of each conference, esp. the last SEVEN years to make comparisons. ANY QUESTIONS TO YOU?

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