U distributes NCAA-restricted supplements

Men’s basketball and men’s hockey players received the protein supplement last year.

Matt Perkins

University athletics officials will file a report to the NCAA detailing the distribution of supplements deemed impermissible under NCAA rules to student-athletes.

Last year, men’s basketball and men’s hockey players received a protein supplement, known as SciFit Extreme Mass, which exceeded the ratio of protein to calories allowed under NCAA rules by 3 percent.

NCAA rules say its member institutions cannot distribute a supplement whose protein-to-calorie ratio is greater than 30 percent.

University officials said shipping and calculation errors led to the supplement’s distribution.

“It was a mistake in the shipping company that shipped us the stuff,” Cal Dietz, associate director of strength and conditioning, said. “It did not have any banned substances in it. We just missed it by a 3 percent mistake.”

Dietz said 62 containers of a different protein supplement were ordered and that 10 to 12 of those were incorrectly shipped as SciFit Extreme Mass.

Athletics Director Joel Maturi said athletics officials then made calculation errors with the Extreme Mass product.

“It was wrong,” he said.

Athletics compliance director Frank Kara said the issue is under investigation. He said his office will look at the timeline of events to see what was purchased and when and will file a report with the NCAA.

Questions were also raised about the supplement Ambrotose AO, used by the women’s hockey team last year. The supplement includes green tea extract, which was added to the NCAA’s list of impermissible ingredients in May.

Both Dietz and Maturi said the University was no longer using the product by the time green tea extract was blacklisted by the NCAA.

Dietz said the athletics department stopped using the SciFit products after the shipping error last summer.

The NCAA governs the protein ratio in supplements to keep an even playing field in intercollegiate athletics, NCAA spokesman Kent Barrett said. He said the rules prevent programs with large budgets from outspending smaller ones, giving them an unfair advantage.

The NCAA statement announcing the May decision cites a lack of regulation in the supplement industry as one of the reasons for banning certain additives.

Dietz said he recommends only products that the NCAA allows, and even from there he makes it clear to the athletes that it is their responsibility to know what they are putting into their bodies.