LATROBE, Pa. -- Pittsburgh Steelers offensive guard Terry Long tested positive for steroids as part of the National Football League's drug-testing procedure and he will be suspended for the first four games of the 1991 National Football League season, UPI has learned.
Long, a 5-foot-11, 278-pound guard who started all 16 games for the Steelers in 1990, was tested on July 11 by the league along with the rest of the team. The NFLPA conducted its own drug-testing of the Steelers on July 12.
Neither the Steelers nor an NFL spokesman would confirm or deny that Long had tested positive for steroids.
'It's a league matter,' said Steelers public relations director Dan Edwards. '(Steelers president) Dan Rooney was in communication with the league. That's where this stands right now. Dan Rooney will have no comment at this time.'
According to the NFL's drug policy, players testing positive for steroids during training camp are subjected to an immediate two-week suspension from practice. After the two weeks, the player is permitted to return to practice, but then he is suspended for the first four games of the regular season.
An additional positive test results in a six-game suspension. Another positive test results in a suspension of at least one year.
Long's specimen revealed high levels of testosterone, sources said.
'Our players are aware of what the rules are, they've been spelled out,' said Tom Donahoe, Steelers director of football development. 'There's been random testing, which began last year. Players know that if they're caught, there's going to be a minimum suspension involved. It's clear-cut, and our players are aware of what's going on.'
On it's 6 p.m. newscast Thursday night, KDKA-TV also reported that Long was taken by ambulance to a Allegheny General Hospital on Wednesday night soon after leaving Steelers training camp at St. Vincent College.
The Steelers spent Wednesday in Carlisle, Pa., for a day of combined practice and a scrimmage against the Washington Redskins.
Long, who had a pulled hamstring, was one of 10 injured Steelers players who did not make the trip to Carlisle. The others were center Chuck Lanza, tackle Tunch Ilkin, tight end Eric Green, defensive ends A. J. Jenkins and Donald Evans, running back Tim Worley, wide receivers Louis Lipps and Rich Drayton, and safety Thomas Everett.
'I can't give you any information,' said Karen Long, a spokesman for Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. 'My hands are tied.'
Karen Long is no relation to Terry Long.
'I'm sorry it happened to Terry, and we're going to miss him as a team for the first four games of the season,' said Lanza. 'As far as steroids are concerned, I'm glad the league is taking the stance it is. As a smaller offensive lineman, I have a difficult time as it is.'