Houlihan was handed a four-year ban for testing positive for trace amounts of the performance enhancer nandrolone. She says the substance entered her system after she ate a pork burrito. There are several examples of tainted meats causing positive tests.
USA Track and Field initially said Houlihan would be allowed to run until all her appeals were exhausted. Later, it said it would not allow any banned athlete to compete.
Houlihan could have appealed the decision by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which is based in Switzerland, to that country’s highest court.
As of noon in Eugene, Oregon, however, no word of such a filing had been given, meaning her suspension remains in place.
Houlihan began Thursday on the start list for both races, which led to phones ringing off the hook at USATF, the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, World Athletics and the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. The main question: Why was the runner, who shared news of her suspension earlier in the week on social media, still on the start list?
“Despite how frustrated people might be with the CAS decision, she is serving a sanction,” USADA CEO Travis Tygart said. “Under the rules, she’s not allowed to compete. It would be illegal for her to do so, unless a court orders differently.”