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NCAA Updates Marijuana Testing Policies By Increasing Threshold Levels

The NCAA announced some major news on Friday regarding their THC testing policies.

In a press release, the NCAA announced that this week’s Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports meeting resulted in the increase of THC threshold levels for college athletes. 

Going off of the threshold levels put in place by the World Anti-Doping Agency, the committee agreed to raise the amount from 35 to 150 nanograms per milliliter, if a student tests positive for having THC in their system.

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“Reconsidering the NCAA approach to cannabis testing and management is consistent with feedback from membership on how to better support and educate student-athletes in a society with rapidly evolving public health and cultural views regarding cannabis use,” said Dr. Brian Hainline, the NCAA's chief medical officer. “Marijuana is not considered a performance-enhancing substance, but it remains important for member schools to engage student-athletes regarding substance use prevention and provide management and support when appropriate.”

The committee also proposed a new penalty structure for college athletes who test positive for THC in NCAA drug testing. 

If the student has one positive test, then there is, “No loss of eligibility if the school provides a management plan and education for the student-athlete.” A second positive test has the same outcome, except with the consequence of missing 25% of regular-season contests if they did not previously follow the management plan. Then, a third positive test follows the same rules, but the student would be required to miss 50% of regular-season contests if they did not follow their school's management plan.

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