Derrick Gordon Becomes First Openly Gay Player in NCAA Division I Basketball
By James Patrick Quizon | April 10, 2014 4:57 AM EST
Jason Collins encouraged active basketball players to come out and reveal their sexuality. Derrick Gordon, a guard out of University of Massachusetts has followed the pro baller’s lead and revealed his in the websites Outsports.com and ESPN.com on Wednesday.
The revelation comes roughly a year after Collins openly admitted his sexuality and Gordon becomes the first-ever openly gay athlete in NCAA Division I basketball.
About a week earlier, Gordon told his teammates that he was gay at a team meeting. Some were surprised at first but eventually showed support.
"I have the most profound respect for Derrick and the decision he has made to come out publicly," said head coach Derek Kellogg via Twitter. "He is a model student, a terrific competitor, but most importantly, he is a wonderful human being. We know his decision weighed heavily on him for some time, but as a coaching staff, a team and a family, we stressed to him that we support him in every way possible."
"I've lived my life hiding behind somebody who I wasn't," Gordon told ESPN.com. "I wasn't really that close to anybody on this team because there was something I had to hide. So I distanced myself as soon as I got here, and nobody knew why I was doing that."
The 6-foot-3 sophomore guard averaged 9.4 points and 3.5 rebounds per game starting for UMass the past NCAA season.
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