Running back Spencer Ware along with cornerbacks Tyrann Mathieu and Tharold Simon will be suspended for Saturday’s game against Auburn University, and possibly longer, according to the unnamed source.
The story was first reported by LSU's student newspaper, The Daily Reveille.
Worried fans have been voicing their concerns on message boards and forums around the Internet. The suspensions come about two weeks before No. 1 ranked LSU is set to take on No. 2 Alabama.
Synthetic marijuana use has been on the rise among athletes in recent years, according to a report by Sportsology.com, due to the absence of THC and the player’s ability to pass a drug test after use. But both law enforcement authorities and drug test technologies have been adjusting to the trend.
LSU's athletic department and head coach Les Miles have yet to release a statement about the suspensions, but if the initial reports hold true this would be the first instance of a player’s suspension based on a positive drug screen for the substance.
Miles has referred to the matter as internal. He was quoted by the Picayune as saying only that, "I'm not inclined to be forthcoming in information. I'm not reactionary to needs of media and things external to this building. There's a process I go through, and it's not going to be shortcutted for the need to communicate. When there's information that I can share, I will. I'm doing this for the best of our football team, to maintain a deportment and procedure that I'm true to and a process I'm comfortable with."
As JJIE reported, in November 2010 the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) added five variations of synthetic marijuana to the official list of illicit drugs, placing a ban on the drug nationally. While the DEA effectively banned what officials considered the five most dangerous compounds, there are alternatives. Similar compounds that are still legal produce comparable effects, and manufacturers wasted no time in making the switch.
Many states, including Louisiana, have taken up more extensive bans on the substance.
When it comes to college football, however, synthetic marijuana -– also known as Spice, K2 and Black Mamba -– is already on the National College Athletic Association's banned substance list. Regardless of state or national law, players can still face suspension under the ban.