Apparently the Honey Badger missed out on D.A.R.E. and just said yes, over and over. Former LSU cornerback and NFL prospect Tyrann Mathieu, known as the "Honey Badger," told an NFL team he failed so many drug tests in college that he quit counting at 10. (No, it's not because he was stoned.)
But based on one NFL's coach reaction, it seems Mathieu's honesty really was the best policy.
State and federal regulations require professional athletes to submit to regular drug testing. Because athletes get tested so often, an assistant coach for one NFL team felt Mathieu's statement said just as much about LSU as it did about Mathieu: "If he flunked 10 tests before they suspended him, it shows that he got no kind of help," he told USA Today.
But today, Mathieu defended and said the school "has a strong drug testing program and went to great lengths to help [him] in his treatment and recovery," USA Today reports. Mathieu told reporters at pro day, "I think they know everything already [about my background]. I think they just want you to be honest with them." For the time being, his honesty seems to have accidentally deflected the scrutiny from him to his alma mater.
Still, because of his well-documented history of drug abuse, NFL scouts are carefully considering the liability Mathieu could become. Particularly troubling NFL scouts is the fact that Mathieu used marijuana to combat stress. One coach said that in the NFL, "The stress isn't going away, it's clearly going to go up. They've got to deal with that."
Fortunately for the NFL, it seems Mathieu might be turning over a new leaf toward sobriety. The Honey Badger has been clean since October and had a strong showing at the NFL scouting combine in February, USA Today reports.
But don't get any ideas. For the rest of us, failing a drug test may not have such a sympathetic happy ending. If you are caught with illegal drugs in your system at work, you risk getting disciplined or possibly even losing your job.
Many draft experts are projecting Mathieu as a second or third-round draft pick. A few experts have Mathieu pegged as a New England Patriot in the second round. So things are looking good for him. Let's hope from now on, he just says no.
- Mathieu can't recall failed drug tests (ESPN)
- Drug Testing: Background Information (FindLaw)
- Drug Testing During Hiring (FindLaw)
- MLB Sues Clinic for Peddling Banned Drugs to Players (FindLaw's Tarnished Twenty)