Miami Dolphin Coach Don Shula has fined and placed...

MIAMI -- Miami Dolphin Coach Don Shula has fined and placed on probation three rookies for 'drug involvement,' it was reported today.

The three players are defensive end Mike Charles, a second-round draft pick from Syracuse University; defensive end Charles Benson, a third-round draft pick from Baylor, and offensive tackle Steve Morman, a free agent on the injured-reserve list.


None of the three players could be reached for comment.

The fines against the three stemmed from an incident that occurred earlier this year during training camp at Biscayne College. A security guard apparently discovered them using a drug, the Herald said. The men were fined and placed on probation last week.

Shula issued this statement late Tuesday: 'I acknowledge that three players -- Mike Charles, Charles Benson and Steve Morman -- were fined last week for drug involvement. It was brought to my attention and later substantiated. It occurred on one of their days off early in training camp.'

Shula would not disclose the amount of the fines or discuss the incident further.

The drug involved could not be confirmed. When asked if it was cocaine, Charles Jackson, the National Football League's assistant director of security, answered: 'No -- I'd rather say no comment at this time.'

Sources told the Herald marijuana was not used.

Jackson said the league learned of the incident from Shula last week, and may take further action against the players.

'As far as we know, the Dolphins' end of it is finished,' he said. 'That does not necessarily mean the league won't take any action. I'm not sure what the commissioner's (Pete Rozelle) pleasure would be at this time.'

The Herald also reported today that a south Florida man arrested in New York on drug charges described himself to officials as a cocaine supplier to the Dolphins.

Osvaldo Anthony Pardo, 29, of Cocoa Beach, said, 'I supply the Dolphins' during a conversation secretly recorded by New York State police on July 21, federal documents show.

Pardo was one of the 13 people arrested following the seizure of $1.2 million worth of cocaine Aug. 30 at a secluded estate near Utica, N.Y.

Prosecutors said they were investigating Pardo's claim that he sold cocaine to team members.

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