Event Organizers: Shawn Rhoden Can Compete If Legal Matters Resolved

There has been a poster making the rounds online promoting 2018 Mr. Olympia Shawn Rhoden as a competitor for the 2020 Arnold Classic in Columbus, Ohio. In an exclusive update, event organizers tell us there is a condition that must be met before he takes the stage this coming March.


It has been in the news for several months that Rhoden is currently facing sexual assault charges from an alleged encounter with a woman in October 2018. As a result of those charges, Rhoden was banned from competing in the 2019 Mr. Olympia by American Media, which was promoting the contest.

He faced no discipline as of this writing from the IFBB Pro League but appeared to be able to compete in other shows. However, there has been more news that has developed since.

Evolution of Bodybuilding is reporting that Rhoden currently does not have a valid IFBB Pro League membership due to him failing to pay the annual $250 fee to maintain his pro status within the organization. Without that membership being, he would not be allowed to compete in any show.

BarBend reached out to the Arnold Sports Festival for a comment on that report. Brent Lalonde of the Arnold Sports Festival sent this exclusive comment in regard to that, as well as Rhoden’s legal situation.

“We do not know anything about the status of Shawn’s pro card. However, he will receive an invite to compete in the 2020 Arnold Classic if his legal matters are resolved before the contest.”

So Rhoden’s return to the stage, in Columbus at least, would only occur if charges are resolved between now and March 6th, 2020. If his pro card status is not resolved by then, that would also prevent him from competing.

Featured Image: Instagram/flexatronrhoden