Mitch Ross, who calls himself "Deer Antler Man," runs S.W.A.T.S. (Sports With Alternatives To Steroids), the company that supplied the deer-antler spray Vijay Singh admitted this year to using. Singh was cleared of violating the PGA Tour's substance-abuse policy last week. Ross answers five questions from Mike Stachura.
Q: Did you understand the PGA Tour's ruling?
The tour ought to apologize to Vijay for its mis-education. If Vijay should have checked with the tour about antler velvet, then he should have checked with them about the steak and milk that's being served in the clubhouse at every tour event, too. I think in the end, Vijay will look like a hero because he did it the right way; he chose the right company. He didn't seek out illegal synthetics.
Q: How safe is this stuff?
It improves health, gets you off pain pills. Do you think Vijay would have spent nine grand on my protocol if I didn't know what I was doing.
Q: You believe you can help average golfers, not just elite athletes?
The weekend warrior is my best customer. The average protocol for a golfer to really improve his game and his body is $150 to $200 a month, $50 a week. What's that to a golfer?
Q: Has all this media coverage been good or bad for your business?
It's not going to be bad. Deer-antler spray is on its way to being vindicated. It has been vindicated in golf. Next is the NFL and MLB. They have to answer. But it is what it is. People shun what they don't understand.
Q: Do you offer a money-back guarantee?
I don't give a money-back guarantee because I've never had anybody want their money back. But there's a bunch of junky antler products out there. If you think a $30 bottle of antler spray is good, you're nuts. Just like in golf, you get what you pay for.