USADA’s drug-testing program is almost assuredly flagging athletes who didn’t knowingly take performance-enhancing drugs. In some cases, they are ending careers over it as well. What USADA’s program fails to take into consideration is how frequently such substances can get into athletes’ systems without the use of PEDs or tainted supplements.

The assumption is that if the substance is in your system, and it wasn’t a tainted supplement, you’re a cheater. That is so far from being the truth, however. Contaminated meat, other foods and even our drinking water have the potential to cause flunked tests. Good luck proving it though.

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

In the case of tests failed due to tainted meat, the fighter has almost no ability to defend themselves. in order to accurately test the meat, they would have to find a sample from not just the same farm or butcher, but the exact same individual animal. Does that sound feasible to anyone? The onus is on the fighter to prove innocence under this system, however, not the other way around.

With the faults of USADA’s system in mind, here are five fighters who might be innocent:

Jason da Silva-USA TODAY Sports

5. Frank Mir

“I don’t know how that is possible as I do not take any performance enhancing drugs” Frank Mir regarding his positive test from March 20th, 2016.

It is entirely likely that Frank Mir did not knowingly take PEDs leading up to his last bout with Mark Hunt. He tested positive for oral turinabol metabolites, however. He then spent tens of thousands of dollars testing his supplements and fighting with USADA. If he was guilty, why would he spend so much money testing his supplements?

Mir suggested at one point that his positive test could have come from eating tainted Kangaroo meat. While some laughed at this, any meat he ate could have potentially caused his doping violation. it would be nearly impossible for him to prove this, however.

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Ian is a MMA writer based out of Toronto, ON Canada. An avid mixed martial arts enthusiast and passionate fan since he was born, Ian has been writing about mixed martial arts for over 5 years.