marijuana-leaf For those of you not following the Japanese Sumo circuit, I thought I'd bring you some hot-off-the-presses news from the Japanese Sumo Association.  From CNN.com

quote_thumb Two popular Russian sumo wrestlers were slapped with lifetime bans from Japan's ancient national sport for allegedly using marijuana and the head of the Japan Sumo Association resigned Monday to take responsibility for the scandal, officials said.

The wrestlers, brothers Roho and Hakurozan, tested positive for the drug when the sport conducted its first drug tests following the arrest last month of another Russian wrestler, Wakanoho, for marijuana possession.

While professional Baseball and Football have had their share of drug related investigations, I didn't think I'd see this coming out of the Sumo world.  Sumo holds has a deep history in religious rituals and holds it's athletes and officials to high moral standards.  In Japan, marijuana possession is a serious offense so this scandal has shaken the country.

Jeff and I visited our co-workers in Japan in May and were honored by being able to attend a Sumo match while we were in town - we even did some things we probably shouldn't have as well...  Our champions were Kotooshu and Asashoryu so I'm glad that those two weren't implicated in this mess.  I would hate to have Jeff come back and have some excuse to get my money back B-).

All kidding aside, this is a touch subject for our Japanese friends and I do respect the fact that Sumo is held to a high standard.  Sometimes I wish my kids athletic role models would be held to these same standards...

-Joe