Last week WWE announced Wellness Policy violations for two Superstars – Bobby Roode and Primo Colon. They were each suspended for 30 days for their first violation of the policy which was implemented in 2006.
Ryback discussed WWE’s Wellness Policy when he was there when Wrestling Inc’s Raj Giri joined his Big Guy podcast.
“As far as I know nothing has probably changed on that. It was all through a third-party, Aegis, they’re working with WWE where it was always multiple times a year that they showed up. Every once in a blue moon on a live event, like on a Friday, but typically they would be there on a Monday or a Tuesday,” recalled Ryback. “You get to the building, Mark Carrano has his coral of WWE referees, they always tell you that you have to go see Mark Carrano because the drug testers are here in which I would always say that I was going to eat first because you get to the building after working out and you go and get some food.
“They try to get you in there really quickly and they corral you into the Talent Relations and you all sit down in a big group in there and you are drinking waters until you have to piss, eventually, after I was there I would do my own thing. I would get there and I would eat and unpack, get situated, drink some water so when I went in there I already had to piss. You get it; you get your ID, they do the whole check deal, the paperwork and then you go to the bathroom and you pull your pants down to your ankles and you lift your shirt up and show the guy your t*ts, show him your d**k and then you piss right in front of him. It is really an annoying process in the grand scheme of things.”
Ryback said that people who are into that aspect of the job are “f***ing weirdos” and his approach was always to just get it over with so he could leave.
“It’s a cover by WWE to protect themselves. It wasn’t an enjoyable process, but it is what it is, you know what you signed up for when you go there and do it. But as far as I know, that’s what it is. But it got that strict because of those dip-s**ts in FCW before, the dumbasses that were using the fake penises, where before you can just go into the stall and piss and you had privacy but then those guys doing their pro-hormones and all that dumb s**t before they got signed when they were up there and then they got busted and so from here on out you have to show your t*ts and pull your pants down to your ankles. I’m all for drug testing to prove that people aren’t cheating. I wish there was a cooler way to do it but there’s not,” admitted Ryback.
“As far as the women I think they have to keep the stall door open if I’m not mistaken. They have to see you giving the sample now. It is what it is because of the people in FCW. It’s not something that happened just in wrestling, that was something in other things where people were selling devices to try and get away with drug testing. I’ve heard of things where there are loopholes and what not where they’ll sign guys that come back and they don’t sign the regular contracts where they’re not subjected to testing.”
Brock Lesnar is someone who fell into one of those loopholes as he’s a part-timer and not a full-time performer. Thus, when Lesnar was suspended by UFC due to a failed drug test, he was not suspended under WWE’s Wellness Policy as it only applies to full-timers.
Ryback then discussed the supposedly random nature of who gets tested.
“It’s a random list. There’s a good portion of the roster that it’s their thing where they used to go to bed at night after traveling and would fine these guys $2,500. There are guys that said who cares, but guys that would pop for marijuana they would be tested over and over again because they knew they were going to pop and would just be stealing their money,” stated Ryback. “There were guys that paid hefty fines by the end of the year for marijuana, which sucks because they’re not using it to be drug addicts, they’re using it to go to bed to help them calm down. There would be no rhyme or reason to it. I would get tested. There’d be times where there was a long stretch where you don’t get tested but then all of a sudden you get tested more times in a shorter period and again, there’s just no rhyme or reason.
“Triple H, there’s no way [he’s been drug tested], and if he is it’s as a publicity stunt. Hunter’s whole career has been made on steroids. Without steroids, he doesn’t exist in pro wrestling and I grew up loving him as one of my favorites, but that’s what it is. It is very biased in what they do there, but the policy in of itself, I love it. I wish they had strict drug-testing policies in all of wrestling.”
Ryback added that you are typically tested a minimum of four times throughout a year and it could be at a WWE event or even at your home.
“They can send someone to your house. I actually had something back when I was younger in developmental and I was back home at my dad’s house they actually called me and said that they need a random drug test. So they actually sent the tester to my dad’s house in Las Vegas and he came to my dad’s bathroom with me and they did the whole deal there,” said Ryback. “It’s weird, but if they need a test you have to be made available to them, or wherever you are if they want to test you. The only way essentially is to say with your phone you don’t answer, but you have a period where you have to get back to them so they can know where you are at and then they will send somebody at whatever local agencies is closer to you and you will have to go there.”
There are some prescription drugs that WWE talent is allowed to take that won’t violate the Wellness Policy, but Ryback revealed Adderall isn’t one of those drugs.
“Again, I’m not a guy that I can’t speak on experience on that but I do know where Adderall was not allowed. There was something with Adderall and marijuana and we had meetings on it. I would always kind of tune out because it never applied to me so I would be doing my own thing and wouldn’t be paying much attention,” admitted Ryback. “But I do know that there was an issue with that where some of the guys that had valid prescriptions for Adderall, which is odd on that one because I don’t think I’ve ever heard of anyone that died from Adderall. I’m sure there are situations out there but that was one of the weird ones, but I know that there were some talents that were unhappy about that but it was becoming an issue because they had valid prescriptions for that.
“When you have that job, mentally your mindset creative-wise for guys and some of the guys that were using it were guys that were under high-stress situations or they have been f**cked with so badly that mentally they needed something. The job can torture your soul. Outside of Adderall, I don’t remember anything prescription wise that being said was not allowed. I think if you had a valid prescription for the majority of things it fell within the rules.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Conversations with the Big Guy Ryback with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.