Poll: One in five PGA Tour pros admit to taking banned substance within last year

October 31, 2019

When the PGA Tour suspended Matt Every in October for a violation of its conduct policy on drugs of abuse, Every copped to having a legal prescription for cannabis, which he takes, he said, to treat a mental-health condition.

Every said he was aware of the Tour’s policy but made no apologies.

“For me, cannabis has proven to be, by far, the safest and most effective treatment,” he said. “With that being said, I have no choice but to accept this suspension and move on.”

Every, a two-time Tour winner, isn’t the only player who thinks marijuana does not belong on the Tour’s banned substances list. In the latest edition of GOLF.com’s Anonymous Pro Survey, nearly 60 percent of the 52 Tour players who were polled at the Safeway Open said the Tour should permit pot.

One player remarked, “They should add nicotine.”

Marijuana is now fully legal in 10 states plus the District of Columbia. In 22 other states, it’s legal for medical purposes. Tour player Robert Garrigus, who was suspended in March after testing positive for THC (the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana), has been among the most outspoken critics of the Tour’s marijuana policy.

“If you have some sort of pain and CBD or THC may help that, and you feel like it can help you and be prescribed by a doctor, then what are we doing?” Garrigus said. “If you are doing marijuana then we should be testing for alcohol, too. If you can buy it in a store, then why are we testing for it? That’s my opinion.”

Clearly it’s an opinion shared by many of Garrigus’ peers. In the poll, one in five players also admitted to having either smoked marijuana or ingested THC-laced edibles within the last year.

GOLF.com also asked the players how many times they had been drug tested in the 2018-19 season. About 70 percent said they were tested three or more times, while only 7% said they weren’t tested at all.

Click here for complete results from the 2019 Anonymous Pro Survey.