Jallen Messersmith of Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., has come out and is believed to be the first openly gay player in U.S. men’s college basketball.
The 6-foot-7 shot-blocking specialist told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he revealed his sexual orientation to his coach last summer and his teammates before the season. He later told his story to Outsports.com, a website that covers gay issues in sports.
He said he has received nothing but positive feedback since the story was posted Tuesday afternoon. Though he acknowledged he felt anxious about the reaction, he said he wanted to come out to help other gay athletes feel comfortable about who they are.
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