The PGA Tour is the latest major professional sports organization to warn players about the use of velvet deer antler products, specifically The Ultimate Spray sold by Sports With Alternatives To Steroids, ThePostGame.com has learned.
"The PGA TOUR regularly warns players of the risks associated with all supplements," wrote Tour spokesperson Laura Hill in an email to ThePostGame.com. "Only those supplements listed under the NSF Certified for Sport program are recognized as free of prohibited substances under the PGA TOUR Anti-Doping Program. The PGA TOUR intends to issue a warning to all players regarding the prohibited ingredient contained in 'The Ultimate Spray.'"
The ingredient mentioned by Hill is IGF-1, a growth hormone on the banned list of the World Anti-Doping Association and all major sports organizations.
On Wednesday night, S.W.A.T.S. founder Mitch Ross said golfer Mark Calcavecchia informed him via text message that the Tour contacted him and told him to stop using the spray immediately.
"Got a call from the tour," the text read. "The Spray is officially illegal. Told me to stop (using) now."
Ross said Calcavecchia also requested that his testimonial be removed from the S.W.A.T.S. website. This comes on the heels of the NFL ordering all of its players to cut ties with S.W.A.T.S. back in February, a move that required Ross to remove those player testimonials as well.
A phone call to Calcavecchia Thursday morning was not immediately returned.
The 51-year-old Calcavecchia is in the middle of another great season on the Champions Tour for players over age 50. He has nine top-10s and is currently seventh on the money list. The Champions Tour is run by the PGA Tour, and is subject to all PGA Tour drug policies.
On Thursday morning, Ross also got a text message from Ken Green asking him to remove his testimonial from the company website.
"I want you to pull me from anything that you use me [for]," the text said.
Reached by phone Thursday morning, Green said he tried the spray but stopped. He has not heard from the Tour. "I feel deceived," he said.