A doctor who worked 22 years for the Steelers faces 185 counts relating to his practices since leaving the team.
According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Dr. Richard Rydze faces charges in Northern Ohio of conspiracy to distribute steroids, HGH, and painkillers.
Prosecutors contend that Rydze distributed the substances from September 2007 through March 2011 “for unauthorized uses such as bodybuilding and athletic performance enhancement.” While the steroids portion of the case doesn’t overlap with Rydze’s time with the Steelers, he’s accused of obtaining more than 21,000 Vicodin tablets from February 2005 through October 2011.
In 2009, ESPN tried to make a smoke-fire connection between Rydze and the Steelers, without evidence that Rydze ever gave steroids or any other banned substance to Steelers players. The curiously-timed report came as the Steelers were migrating through a playoff tournament that resulted in their most recent Super Bowl win. Alas, ESPN ultimately declined to make its reporter, Mike Fish, available to answer basic questions about the story.
It’ll be interesting to see whether and to what extent ESPN dusts off the story in the hopes of raising questions about whether Rydze was giving steroids or HGH to Steelers players.
Maybe they’ll wait for Pittsburgh’s next postseason game.