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Penn State Wrestling Great Aaron Brooks Cleared for Olympics, Per Father

Photo by Penn State Wrestling: Aaron Brooks

Last week, Penn State wrestling legend Aaron Brooks said he’d know for sure whether he’d be able to compete in this year’s Summer Olympics in Paris by the end of the following week.

That ended up being the case.

Per Brooks’ father, John, Brooks is “cleared and heading to Paris.”

Typically, Brooks would have known for sure that he was going to the Olympics when he qualified during last month’s Olympics Trials, beating reigning Gold Medalist and fellow Penn State wrestling legend David Taylor two straight times in a best-of-three series at 86 KG. But weeks later, it was revealed that a testing issue had made Brooks’ qualification less than a sure thing.

Brooks had a testing issue at the U23 World Tournament.

“It has been revealed that our 86kg Olympic rep Aaron Brooks allegedly failed testing at last year’s u23 world tournament where he won Gold (for Adderall, not exactly a PED),” Pat Mineo, founder of The Wrestling Room, posted to X (formerly Twitter) Monday afternoon. “There was apparently an issue or error with reporting the script and some red tape came up. He received a temporary waiver to compete at trials and will not know if he’s suspended (or what a suspension may look like) until the end of the week. Apparently, lawyers are confident they can get the full approval but as of now, he’s still in limbo.” 

Mineo sent two additional posts.

“The hope is for a retroactive suspension (if one is given) that would count as time served,” he wrote. “The kicker is apparently DT was never directly told any of this by his people at PSU…

“I hope it’s patched up,” he wrote. They are working on the proper filings to make sure it gets cleared up in time. As the post states, this wasn’t something egregious, but the reporting processes seem very tedious when it comes to this stuff.

“Again, I hope it works out.”

Later in the week, Brooks was asked about the situation on the Baschamania Podcast hosted by wrestling insider Justin Basch.

He said he was “surprised it took this long for people to twist it.”

“The negatives and the wrongs… we’re surprised it took this long,” Brooks told Basch. “I thought this would happen right away. People would be like ‘awe, he’s using the steroids. I have no ill will against people, they’re just trying to stir up the pot. They’re trying to do what they do for their platform.”

Brooks said he laughed when he saw the reports at first because what he tested positive for was “not even Adderall, dude, it’s Vyvanse.”

“Whole wrong medication, so I already know someone’s twisting it,” Brooks said.

Brooks said he had been prescribed Vyvanse because he was “struggling in school,” trying to balance class work with wrestling overseas.

“Whenever I went to take the drug test, I even wrote down the medication on it,” Brooks said.  “It’s not like I was hiding something.

So what was the problem.

“I didn’t bring a prescription,” Brooks said, which is what the doctors needed.”

“So because I didn’t bring the prescription, it flagged as maybe he got it off the streets,” Broo So, what I then had to go do was show that I was prescribed it. Get it to lawyers and then to whoever it was: WADA [World Anti-Doping Agency], USADA [U.S. Anti-Doping Agency], whatever it is. And they just had to put it through the clearinghouse.”

“At first, I wasn’t. Because they had to accept that it was a prescription, talk to the doctors that gave it to me, just make sure it was legit.”

“It’s funny how things come out after you win something or someone loses. Someone’s going to make an excuse, they’re going to kind of cry about it. That’s someone’s character, right? If you’re looking for excuses, you already lost. So I just think, yeah, it’s interesting seeing. Like, you have the wrong stuff.”

With this matter resolved, the U.S. Olympic team is officially set. Four of the six members are part of Nittany Lion Wrestling club. Brooks and Zain Retherford each are Penn State wrestling legends. Here’s the team:

57 KG: Spencer Lee

65 KG: Zain Retherford (NLWC)

74 KG: Kyle Dake (NLWC)

86 KG: Aaron Brooks (NLWC)

97 KG: Kyle Snyder (NLWC)

120 KG: Mason Paris 


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