Japan’s Nihon University to Abolish American Football Team amid Illegal Drug Scandal(UPDATE 1)

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
A Nihon University building is seen in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo.

A Nihon University committee has decided to abolish the American football team marred by an illegal drug scandal, university sources have said.

According to the sources, the internal committee met Tuesday night to discuss how to deal with the team. One option was that the team should be allowed to continue its activities. However, the committee concluded the university cannot win trust from the public unless it takes the harsh measure of abolishing the team. The team could not avoid suspicion that illegal drugs were used among its members.

Since August, three players have been arrested by the Metropolitan Police Department on suspicion of violating drug control laws, and the university suspended the team indefinitely effective Sept. 1.

Nicknamed the Phoenix, the team is known as a powerhouse of collegiate American football in Japan and had about 120 members as of August.