Former BYU center Rafael Araujo, who was selected with the eighth pick by the Toronto Raptors in this year's NBA draft, has served 23 months of a two-year ban from playing internationally after testing positive for the steroid nandrolone during the 2002 World Championships in Indianapolis, the Toronto Star has reported.
According to Brett Pyne, BYU sports information director, BYU coaches became aware after signing Araujo, but before he arrived on campus to play for the Cougars, that international basketball officials were concerned about a substance found in Araujo's blood. BYU's understanding was that Araujo had been taking an over-the-counter supplement.
The NCAA also was aware of the concern and began testing Araujo when he enrolled at BYU.
"The NCAA tests a lot of athletes, but he's one they made sure got tested," Pyne said.1 comment on this story
For that reason, BYU officials are confident that Araujo was using no illegal or banned supplements in his two years of playing for BYU. "If that testing had shown substances not allowed and had it been a continuing problem he would not have been eligible to play," Pyne said.
The newspaper also reported that Araujo has tested clean in NCAA tests during his two seasons at BYU.
Araujo was one of three players suspended by FIBA, the international basketball federation.
"In each case, the implicated athlete acknowledged the fact that he ingested supplements ignoring the fact that these supplements contained androgenic anabolic steroid agents," FIBA said in a press release.His NBA career is not in question, as the NBA does not test its players for steroids.
CONTRIBUTING: Jim Rayburn