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CSAC Commissioner George Dodd Talks Sonnen’s Appeal

UFC middleweight contender Chael Sonnen has been out of action since losing to middleweight champ Anderson Silva at UFC 117 and testing positive for elevated levels of testosterone for that fight.

Set to make an appeal to the California State Athletic Commission on December 2nd, it was recently revealed that Sonnen’s defense would be that he has been undergoing testosterone replacement therapy and had previously informed the CSAC of the TRT, thereby clearing him for registering elevated levels of testosterone.

CSAC commissioner George Dodd recently spoke with MMA Fighters Association concerning Sonnen’s planned defense and countered by saying that clearing fighters with TRT is standard procedure and that elevated levels of testosterone are never allowed, regardless of the reason.

“When anybody is on any type of medication or anything like that they are required to provide physical documentation prior to us allowing them to compete here,” said Dodd. “That goes for any athlete that’s on any medication that could result in a positive toxicology test revealing abuse. Our people review it and if there is any alternative benefit then that question will also get asked. But, from what I understand, even if you’re on testosterone therapy you would not have elevated testosterone.”

It has been said that Sonnen’s levels could have been fluctuating on the day of the test due to recent treatments, and that something resembling a false positive could have been triggered.

Dodd further explained the process for determining whether or not an athlete undergoing TRT is allowed.

“And it has to be approved. Let me remind you again: we have to clear it. We need to get necessary documentation from a physician saying why you’re on this medication, ‘these are the treatments that we’ve attempted and it hasn’t worked or it has.’ Then we forward that information to our ring-side physician for review. If our physician agrees with their doctor then as long as they don’t test outside of a particular range they are fine.”

The other issue that seems to be on the table is that Sonnen only informed the commission of his TRT once, and apparently the CSAC requires to be informed before every fight when TRT has been undergone.