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Too big a slip to ignore

July 3, 2008 |  7:09 pm

EUGENE, Ore. -- Straying off the track and into the gym for a minute, let's discuss Morgan Hamm's positive steroid test, announced today by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

He got only a warning, but he should be thrown off the team.

USA Gymnastics doesn't have the guts to do that because it would alienate Hamm's twin brother, Paul, and without a committed Paul Hamm the U.S. men's team won't go far in Beijing.

Sorry, but it's tough to believe the excuse that Morgan Hamm didn't know or forgot that he had to file paperwork with USA Gymnastics before getting the steroid injection. He's not a kid. He's trying to qualify for his third Olympic team. He has been through this before and has to have known that any drug he takes, even if given for a legitimate medical use, must be accounted for.

But he'll get a pass because the men's team needs his floor exercise scores. Would USA Gymnastics do the same if his last name weren't Hamm?

-- Helene Elliott