Ben Rothwell flagged for potential doping violation by USADA

UFC heavyweight Ben Rothwell faces a potential doping violation after an out-of-competition drug sample submitted on Feb. 6 was flagged by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency).

UFC officials announced the news on Tuesday.

"The UFC organization was formally notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Ben Rothwell of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection on February 6, 2017," UFC officials said in a statement.

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"USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case. It is important to note that, under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full fair legal review process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed."

USADA is not allowed to reveal the substance reportedly found in the sample that caused the positive test result unless the athlete releases that information first or until after the adjudication process has finished.

Rothwell will face a provisional suspension until he is either cleared by USADA and the UFC or his punishment has been handed down once he has completed the adjudication process.

Rothwell was rumored to return at UFC 211 in Dallas on May 13 against former heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum, although the bout had never been officially announced by the promotion.

While there are no details surrounding the potential doping violation, this is the second time Rothwell has run afoul of drug testing policies. Rothwell was suspended by the UFC for nine months back in 2013 after testing positive for elevated levels of testosterone following his knockout win over Brandon Vera.