Not everyone is taking the Al Jazeera report that linked Peyton Manning to HGH use seriously, but the NFL is.
That was one thing that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell made clear on Tuesday afternoon in an interview on the Rich Eisen Show.
"As you know, that report involved allegations that we take very seriously," Goodell said. "They were allegations well beyond any individual player and we take those seriously. We're working with law enforcement, we're working with USADA, we're working with Major League Baseball, which is also involved, to make sure that we investigate that seriously, fully, thoughtfully and just like any other investigation we allow the facts to come about. That's where the focus is right now."
Manning, who will quarterback the Denver Broncos against the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50 on Sunday at Levi's Stadium, was linked to HGH in an Al Jazeera report midway through January. The report suggested that Manning's wife received shipments of HGH in 2011, and it seemed to imply it was for Manning's use.
Manning continued to refute the report on Monday night, saying he expects the NFL investigation will turn up a "a big fat nothing." But he also added that he "respected" the rules of the NFL, seemingly hinting that he would turn over any information that Goodell needed. Goodell seemed to confirm that Tuesday, although he spoke generally.
"We have players and others that have committed their full cooperation," Goodell said, "and that's important in the context of getting to the facts." . . .It's too bad the Indianapolis Star and the rest of the media in this town have decided a news blackout on this story is in order. You knew they would begin circling the wagons as soon as their beloved Manning, who has denied using any HGH shipped to his wife, blew his whistle on his former Indianapolis Colts employer, making clear that he would have never gone to the Guyer Institute in Indianapolis, an anti-aging clinic which offers unconventional medical treatments, had he not been encouraged to do so by the Colts organization and under their supervision. After the endless reporting on the Deflategate nonsense to which we were treated last year, the Indianapolis media owes its public legitimate investigative journalism when a more serious subject matter arises.
Attorney General Greg Zoeller is in the best position to initiate an investigation into the allegations given his statutory role in prosecuting cases against medical practitioners who stray from the rules of their licensed profession. If HGH is being prescribed by that clinic in the fashion originally claimed by one of its former pharmacy interns, Charles Sly, and one of its former patients, WTHR sports commentator Bob Kravitz, that is a prohibited off-label use of the drug. For comical relief, Zoeller partnered with Colts owner Jim Irsay and his Colts organization in a campaign against prescription drug abuse only months after Irsay's arrest in Carmel in March 2014 for driving while intoxicated. A large stash of prescription drugs were found in Irsay's possession during that arrest.
Advance Indiana has already heard from reporters that Zoeller says he has no jurisdiction to investigate the matter because no formal complaint has been made against any licensed practitioner. He's not about to investigate anything that might implicate the Indianapolis Colts. His office deferred questions to the FBI, which obviously isn't doing anything since it never acted even after a criminal indictment in an unrelated federal case prosecuted in Colorado claimed HGH imported from China made its way to the Indianapolis clinic in question. The Attorney General's office has in the past initiated investigations involving off-label use of prescription drugs, notwithstanding Zoeller's refusal to look into the matter.
Zoeller's inaction comes as no surprise. This is the same guy, after all, who was very cozy with convicted Ponzi schemer Tim Durham when it was still popular to hang out with him, along with our corrupt former Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi. Zoeller provided a job to Durham's adopted son in his office, although nobody really knew what his job responsibilities were supposed to be. Zoeller quietly removed him from his payroll following the FBI raid on Durham's crumbling empire. Naturally, our local media made no effort to learn more about why or what Bernard Durham was doing on Zoeller's payroll. Bernard is the biological son of Bernard Marie, the first husband of his mother, Joan SerVaas, daughter of the late Beurt SerVaas. Marie, a French emigrant, has been described as an "off-the-books intelligence asset" for the French. Zoeller was one of the last holdouts in returning large campaign contributions he had received from Durham to the bankruptcy trustee overseeing recovery of the more than $220 million out of which Durham had defrauded Ohio investors of Fair Finance.