LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky Wildcats defensive end Jeremy Jarmon was ruled ineligible for his senior season by the NCAA because of a failed drug test.
He said at a news conference Saturday he had inadvertently taken a banned substance that turned up positive during a random NCAA test in February. An appeal was denied, in effect ending his college football career.
Jarmon did not identify the substance and took no questions.
Jarmon took the supplement while recovering from a shoulder injury and was not taking part in activities. He had been taking the supplement for 15 days before checking with the training staff, who told him to stop taking it.
"But it was too late," Jarmon said, reading from a prepared statement.
Jarmon said his goal in the offseason was to become leaner. He bought a dietary supplement while shopping for vitamins on the recommendation of a worker at a nutrition store, not knowing that it contained a banned substance.
"I do not need to cheat to be successful," he said.
Jarmon has the third-most sacks in Kentucky history. He was an honorable mention on last season's AP All-Southeastern Conference Team. He already has earned his bachelor's degree in political science, and coach Rich Brooks said in a statement that Jarmon wanted to address the incident in public and "apologize and explain."
"My first concern is with Jeremy and his family and what a devastating blow this is for them," Brooks said. "There was no intent by Jeremy to do anything improper, it was an error in judgment in not checking with our staff [before taking the supplement]. Jeremy has been an outstanding individual on and off the football field, and I hope that people understand the class act he has has been."
Brooks added that Jarmon was preparing to study in France as he worked toward a second major.
Athletics director Mitch Barnhart had hoped the NCAA would consider "extenuating circumstances" in Jarmon's case.
"The NCAA rules are the rules that we all live by and they're consistent, based on precedent and we've got to honor this," Barnhart said. "It may not always feel right, but there is precedent and it is consistent."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.