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The 35-year-old is only the seventh player to be suspended since drug testing began in 2008, and just the second to have been suspended for a “drug of abuse.” As of 2017, three categories are listed under “drugs of abuse” on the Tour’s anti-doping policy: Cannabinoids, narcotics and other. Every confirmed to the Golf Channel that he tested positive for marijuana.
“I have been prescribed cannabis for a mental health condition by my physician whom has managed my medical care for 30 years,” Every said, via the Golf Channel. “It has been determined that I am neither an acceptable candidate to use prescription ‘Z’ class drugs nor benzodiazepines. Additionally, these classes of drugs can be highly addictive and harmful to the human body and mind. For me, cannabis has proven to be, by far, the safest and most effective treatment.”
Robert Garrigus was suspended in March for violating the policy for marijuana use. After his return, the 41-year-old used his position to advocate for the Tour to change its stance on marijuana use — as it’s already legal in some form in 33 states in the United States.
Every has two wins on the PGA Tour, winning back-to-back years at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in 2014 and 2015. He had two top-10 finishes on Tour last season — a T3 finish at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans and a runner-up finish at the AT&T Byron Nelson — and reached the FedExCup Playoffs, though failed to advance past The Northern Trust. He has made the cut twice in five attempts so far this season, and finished T8 at the Houston Open last week.
Every will be eligible to return to the Tour on January 7, 2020, for the start of the Sony Open at Wai’alea Country Club in Hawaii. He has only qualified for three tournaments during his suspension, however, so his time away from the Tour will be minimal.
“I don't agree with [the suspension] for many reasons, mainly for my overall well-being, but I’m excited for what lies ahead in my life and career,” Every said, via the Golf Channel. “Over the last few years I have made massive strides and I know my best is still in front of me. I can’t wait to come back better than ever in January.”
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