Updated: Monday, June 19, 2006

Outside the Lines: The new victims

In a special report for FireMarkMay.com, Outside the Lines brings to light the shocking truths of one of college football's most secret societies. Sources close to the investigation have told OTL that Michigan State mascot and icon, Sparty, is being accused of illegal steroid trafficking after federal agents raided his Scottsdale home earlier today. The raid was the latest in a string of incidents connecting steroids and the mascot community.

Sparty, long revered in mascot circles, is currently being held without bail.

Long spoken of in hushed tones, the hidden world of the mascot remain a mystery to most college football fans. While very visible on gamedays, the characters are shrouded in mystery for much of the year. Little is known about their customs and habits, but what is surfacing from the latest reports is a culture of illegal peromance-enhancing drugs that will most definitely mar the college football landscape as we know it.

Early this afternoon, US Marshals confiscated thirteen "kits" of growth hormone, an illegal substance known for its dramatic effect on overall strength and musculature. Symptoms of abuse include exaggerated facial features, violent mood swings, and a general swelling due to water rentention. While a blood test is being developed for detection in humans, growth hormone has long rumored to be the drug of choice among the mascot community due to the side effects being almost completely undetectable. The cheering masses of animals, warriors, and pieces of fruit apparently use up to 4 times the reccommended dosage in order to fire up their routines, and in turn, their adoring fans. A spirit fueled by ill-gotten gains, the integrity of the game now in jeopardy.

The raid on Sparty's offseason Arizona home has far-reaching implications, uncovering a client list that includes Willie Wildcat, Brutus Buckeye, and Reveille. While the first two have always been plagued by rumors due to their gigantism, a prime sypmtom of hormone abuse, the allegations now surrounding the prized collie have shocked even her closest friends. "I still can't believe it," replied Yell Leader Russ Tyler,"she's always such a good pup. We always thought she was fired up for Aggie football. Turns out, she was living a lie."

Despite record attendance and inspiring new routines, fans must now ask themselves if they are watching true spirit or a drug-fueled forgery. Clean crowd-rousers like Tyler now face a new challenge this season as a shadow of doubt hangs over college football fans everywhere. For those like Tyler, their jobs have become that much harder.

Bob Ley can be seen every Sunday morning on ESPN's Outside the Lines. Yeah, we're never up that early either.

(Photos courtesy of Golden Tornado .)



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