Skip to main content
  1. Life
  2. Society & Culture
  3. GLBTQ Culture

UMass’ Derrick Gordon is first openly gay Division I men's basketball player

See also

Another college athlete has come out as gay. According to ESPN on April 9, Derrick Gordon, a sophomore starter for the University of Massachusetts men’s basketball team, has revealed he is gay.

Just weeks after his team was eliminated from the NCAA tournament, the 22-year-old shooting guard felt it was time. Coming out as gay makes Gordon the first openly gay player in Division I men’s college basketball. The decision to come out publicly comes just days after he revealed his sexuality to his family, coaches and teammates. He told ESPN in an interview that he just wanted to stop lying to those around him.

“I just didn’t want to hide anymore, in any way. I didn’t want to have to lie or sneak. I’ve been waiting and watching for the last few months, wondering when a Division I player would come out, and finally I just said, ‘Why not me?”

Gordon is a native of Plainfield, N.J. and mentioned Jason Collins acknowledging his sexuality and actually playing in games this season in the NBA as a point of inspiration for him. It was important to him to know that his sexuality wouldn’t be an issue if he is to reach the NBA level.

The UMass athletic administration has expressed how proud they are of Gordon. Athletic director John McCutcheon said in a statement that the school is committed to creating a welcoming and accepting atmosphere.

“UMass is proud to have Derrick Gordon as a member of our athletic family and to honor his courage and openness as a gay student-athlete. UMass is committed to creating a welcoming climate where every student-athlete, coach and staff member can be true to themselves as they pursue their athletic, academic and professional goals.”

Teammates have expressed how much happier Gordon looks now that he has come out, noticing that the pressure created some stress for the shooting guard. Even more pressure was taken off when his teammates told him “we got you; you’re one of us” soon after he made his announcement.

Subscribe to New England Gay Issues Examiner.

Follow the New England Gay Issues Examiner on Twitter.

Like our Facebook page.



  • Dan Savage
    Dan Savage cares about LGBT youth, bullying and saving lives
    Today's Buzz
  • Raku
    Teachers and students can use this summer to learn a new skill
    15 Photos
  • Beach body
    Fitness: Earn your beach body badge with bootcamp classes
    10 Photos
  • Greek wine
    Unwind with these delicious wines: The thrilling wines of Greece
    7 Photos
  • Mandy Moore
    Exclusive interview with Celebrity Mandy Moore concerning animal activism
    5 Photos
  • Educational family vacations
    Find out how to take an educational family vacation that doesn't break the bank
    9 Photos

Related Videos:

  • AIDS 2014 Austrailia
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • President Obama signing order
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  •  ‘Two and a Half Men’ to tackle gay issues using straight characters
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518328026" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>