Sunday, February 9, 2014

Conner Mertens Leads the Way Out

On January 28, 2014, Conner Mertens became the first active football player to come out as bisexual. This is the letter he shared with his team and hometown.

Conner Mertens

Watch the Willamette University football kicker's video interview below with Outsports' Cyd Zeigler and You Can Play's Wade Davis on how and why he came out.

Days later, his boyfriend Chandler Whitney came out as gay during the first week of winter practice with his baseball team at Walla Walla Community College. Outsports covers his story here.

Chandler Whitney
Since Mertens came out, it seems more and more college athletes are coming out.

Former NFL kicker and LGBTQA ally Chris Kluwe applauds Mertens' courage.

Kluwe writes in that all athletes competing at the 2014 Winter Olympics have the moral obligation to speak out against Russia's legislated homophobia.

Mertens says he hopes his coming-out story "[lays] a trail for somebody else to do something like this, and have it be easier for them."

As more sports players come out, the more evident it becomes the LGBT community is everywhere and comes in all shapes and sizes - even tough, competitive athletes.

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