Steroids have often been the reason for the subsequent rise and fall of some of the most popular names in sports. While baseball has always remained the poster boy for athletes shamed by steroid use or performance enhancing drugs, various other sports persons have fallen victim to increased scrutiny and negative press that accompanies steroid use.
While some athletes on this list have admitted to using steroids or have tested positive, other athletes are still considered to be in the alleged category.
10. Marion Jones
Marion Jones has been one of the most popular and decorated female track & field athletes. In October 2007, she admitted to steroid use. Rumors about steroid use dogged Jones for many years. However, she always denied any involvement. In fact, she even testified before two grand juries that she had never used steroids.
9. Jose Canseco
Jose Canseco came out with his book Juiced in 2005. The book was about his life as a baseball player and the impact of steroid use on many players. In the book, Canseco openly admitted to using steroids and even named some of his teammates. He even claimed that he personally injected some of his teammates with performance enhancing drugs.
8. Floyd Landis
The first stint of Floyd Landis’ cycling career lasted for only seven years. In 2006, Landis unexpectedly won the Tour de France. Although he got off to a disappointing start, he picked up on stage 17 and paved the way for his victory. An evaluation came back positive with elevated levels of testosterone and epitestosterone. Landis was stripped of his victory and banned for a while as a consequence.
7. Ben Johnson
Canadian Olympic sprinter, Ben Johnson, won a bronze medal at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984. Ben Johnson wanted to improve his own result in Seoul, Korea in the 1988 Summer Olympics. However, Ben Johnson tested positive for steroid use in Seoul. The Canadian Government ordered an open enquiry in this matter. Although, Ben denied any involvement with drugs initially, he eventually admitted to using steroids. He accepted that he had been taking performance enhancing drugs.
6. Chris Benoit
Chris Benoit was one of the most popular and decorated wrestlers. He was a two time World Heavyweight Champion and even competed in the WCW, ECW and WWE. Unfortunately, Chris Benoit ended his life in June 2007. The police discovered his body along with the bodies of his son and wife. It was ruled as a murder-suicide. It was reported that Chris Benoit’s testosterone levels were elevated.
5. Mark McGwire
In 1998, Mark McGwire became a household name when he faced off against Chicago Cubs’ Sammy Sosa. Both of them battled out for the MLB home-run record. However, Mark McGwire prevailed and hit 70 home runs in a single season. Unfortunately, despite this streak, Mark McGwire’s name has continued to be mired by ongoing investigations related to steroid use in baseball. Until now, nothing has been proven against him.
4. Barry Bonds
Barry Bonds’ trainer, Greg Anderson, was proven guilty by a grand jury in 2003. He was charged with supplying numerous athletes with steroids. It wasn’t long before Barry Bonds was swept up in this controversy.
3. Rafael Palmeiro
Rafael Palmeiro is another popular baseball player to have been outed by Jose Canseco. In his book, Jose Canseco claimed that he had personally injected Rafael with steroids.
2. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Although Arnold Schwarzenegger has openly admitted to steroid use in the past, he still claims that he only used steroids while they were legal. In fact, Arnold even sued German doctor, Willi Heepe, for claiming that the actor-turned-politician would die early because of steroid use. Arnold Schwarzenegger even won the case and earned $12,000 as damages.
1. Alex Rodriguez
Alex Rodriguez is still considered to be one of the most popular and best all-around baseball players. Alex admitted to steroid use in 2009. He admitted to using steroids from 2001-2003. The primary reason for using steroids was extreme pressure for performance.
There have been many other popular and high-paid athletes who have been tainted because of steroid use. The list seems to increase in length with each passing year. One can only hope that the sanctity of the game will not be affected by a few men.
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