University of Massachusetts basketball player Derrick Gordon on Wednesday announced he's gay, becoming the first openly gay athlete in Division 1 men's basketball history.
"I don't want to hide in front of my parents or relatives or anybody now," Gordon
told ESPN. "I want to be myself, be who I am, around everybody."
Gordon, a sophomore, averaged 9.4 point per game this season and
helped lead UMass to its first tournament berth since 1998.
UMass officials supported Gordon's decision.
"I truly admire Derrick Gordon for making the courageous decision to come out publicly," UMass Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy said in a statement. "Derek is a superb student-athlete who represents our campus with distinction. The poise and confidence with which he has shared his personal story embody our campus's shared values of respect, inclusion and diversity."
Earlier this year, University of Missouri football player
Michael Sam came out. Last year, Brooklyn Nets center Jason Collins
also came out.
said Collins' announcement inspired him to come out, too.