Supplements taken by OU athletes aren’t on NCAA’s banned list

The University of Oklahoma issued a press release Thursday afternoon regarding NCAA secondary violations reported in an Associated Press story this week.

According to the press release, the supplements given to OU student-athletes are not banned by the NCAA. Athletes are allowed to take the supplements, but universities aren’t allowed to provide those products. In one instance, the university ordered a correct product but was mistakenly given an incorrect product by the manufacturer.

According to the OU press release:

* The University of Oklahoma Athletics Department’s compliance staff, as part of routine checks, recently uncovered NCAA rules infractions that were self-reported by the University and deemed to be secondary violations by the NCAA.

* The most recent self-report from OU to the NCAA included the distribution of ready-to-drink health supplements Cytomax and Endurox R4.

* Cytomax is a drink product similar to other energy drinks/hydration liquids. OU staff members ordered the correct product, but the product shipped by the manufacturer was not the correct product. The shipped item included amino-acids and ginseng, which are not banned substances but are ones which athletic staff themselves are prohibited

from distributing to student-athletes.

* CytoSport, the maker of Cytomax, acknowledged its error in a formal letter and subsequently sent the correct product.

* Endurox R4, also a sports drink, contains two amino acids and therefore, although also not a banned substance, is one which athletics staff/trainers are prohibited from distributing to student-athletes. PacificHealth, the makers of Endurox R4, accepted Oklahoma’s return shipment of the product on April 17, 2007.

*Both CytoSport and Endurox R4 are available over the counter from many stores. Both are permissible substances for NCAA student-athletes to ingest, although it is impermissible for NCAA members to provide the products to student-athletes. Neither OU nor the NCAA tests for these substances because a student is not banned from using such substances or from having the substance in their system.

Here is the NCAA rule pertaining to nutritional supplements and what schools are and are not permitted to provide:

16.5.2 Permissible (g) Nutritional Supplements.

An institution may provide only nonmuscle-building nutritional supplements to a student-athlete at any time for the purpose of providing additional calories and electrolytes, provided the supplements do not contain any NCAA banned substances. Permissible nonmuscle-building nutritional supplements are identified according to the following classes: Carbohydrate/electrolyte drinks, energy bars, carbohydrate boosters and vitamins and minerals.