Ricky Williams is one of the best college running backs in the history of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), playing four seasons at Texas University and two times as a part of an All American team. In 1998, he received the Heisman award, a distinction to the best American college football player in the U.S.A. He played 11 seasons in the National Football League and, despite his outstanding performance during his career, the athlete faced scandals and sanctions because of his affinity for cannabis. During the 2004 season, Williams tested positive for cannabis and was punished with a USD 650,000 fine and a four-game suspension. He came back in 2007 to play five more seasons until he retired with 10,000 rushing yards.
The History Behind “Highsman”—by Ricky Williams
Now retired, Williams wants to invest in cannabis through his company, Highsman, in a partnership with another large cannabis company and devote all profits to mental health. In an interview with Angeles Time, the football player revealed he tried cannabis for the first time during his junior year at high school but did not become a regular user until after leaving college. The athlete claims he turned to cannabis because he needed to find inner peace, and this became obvious after the series of scandals he got involved in—his need for inner peace was greater than his desire for fame and money.
William’s NFL career paved the way for his next calling after football: becoming a cannabis advocate for mental health and also launching his own cannabis brand, Highsman. His proposal, combining sport and spirituality, seeks to find the link between pro athletes’ physical training with mental preparation for success in their personal life. The first mission of Williams and his brand is to provide people with a means expressing their love for sports and cannabis—two institutions that have been separated for quite a long time. The idea is to offer cannabis in different forms that vary according to each strain and their intended effect. Highsman features different types of cannabis flower selected for each stage of a match, i.e. pre-game, half match, and post-game, as well as a wide array of edibles and other derived products. The company’s goal is to support athletes, giving them counselling and information about cannabis use.
In 2020, the NFL and the National Football League Players Association signed a new agreement that eases the pressure on cannabis consumption. Under this new contract, players who test positive will no longer be suspended, but just evaluated during two weeks during training. Still, players will face fines and could be required to undergo treatment.
William (44) and his company, Highsman, have recently joined Jeeter to produce a new indica variety called “Sticky Ricky.” 100% of profits from this partnership will be devoted to fund the mental health programmes of “Athletes For Care,” an NGO founded by former athletes to help other athletes both on a physical and a mental level.