EL PASO, Texas - With the Biogenesis scandal also involving high school athletes in South Florida, ABC-7 wanted to know what is being done in the Borderland to prevent youngsters from using performance enhancing drugs.
"He is not a doctor, he is a drug dealer," Miami DEA Special Agent in Charge Mark Trouville said of Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch. "Underage high school athletes would receive testosterone in three loaded syringes and testosterone cream from Bosch without a proper exam by a licensed physician and would pay Bosch between $250 to $600 a month."
Ysleta Independent School District Athletic Director Mike Williams, a former Borderland baseball coach, said there is a concern.
"There's always the trickle down effects from any professional sport," Williams said. "Fortunately the (University Interscholastic League) has a very comprehensive steroid education program that we are actually a part of."
Williams said coaches are required to complete a rules compliance program that includes education on performance enhancing drugs. In addition, parents and students must sign an agreement acknowledging the student-athlete will not use PED's and are subject to random testing by the UIL.
"A coach can usually recognize the symptoms of a student that may be on peformance enhancing drugs," Williams said. "It's usually pretty evident."
Williams said coaches watch for abnormal gains by athletes in the weight room.
Other signs include acne, increased aggressiveness and breast tissue development.
San Diego Padres infielder Everth Cabrera was one of the original 12 named on the Biogenesis list. He served a 50-game suspension last year, but just two weeks ago was playing in a rehab assignment for the El Paso Chihuahuas at Southwest University Park.
ABC-7 asked Chihuahua's Manager Pat Murphy for comment, but were told Padres brass had already cautioned everyone in the organization not to speak publicly about the Biogenesis scandal.
Williams said the concern about PED's is heightened in El Paso because of the proximity to the border.
"I think there's always the possibility of that," he said. "But the kids can probably access it anywhere they want."