After the 2012-13 NBA season, free agent big man Jason Collins revealed in a Sports Illustrated story that he is gay. Then, on February 23 of this year, Collins became the first openly gay player in the NBA, when he signed a 10-day contract with the Brooklyn Nets.
Today, UMASS sophomore shooting guard Derrick Gordon becomes the first openly gay NCAA Division I basketball player, as reported by Cyd Ziegler of Out Sports.
In an interview with Ziegler, along with other sports outlets, Gordon says that Collins coming out publicly and, maybe more importantly, paving a way for his hopeful career as an NBA player, was one of the main inspirations for him opening up to his teammates and revealing his sexuality.
"When [Jason Collins] came out I wanted to come out the next day." Derrick Gordon.— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) April 9, 2014
Collins tweeted out his appreciation and pride.
In an interview with Kate Fagan of ESPN, Gordon said that he didn't want to "hide anymore" and that when Collins came out, it was important to him "knowing that sexuality didn't matter, that the NBA was OK with it."
Collins, after signing two consecutive 10-day contracts with the team, has signed on for the remainder of this season to be a member of the Brooklyn Nets.
- Derrick Gordon finds his freedom - Cyd Ziegler - Outsports
- Derrick Gordon, UMass basketball player, becomes first openly gay NCAA Division I player - Kate Fagan - ESPN
- Gordon: Collins acceptance was 'important' - Mike Mazzeo - ESPN New York
- Boomer & Carton: UMass’ Derrick Gordon Follows Example Set By Jason Collins - Boomer Esaison & Chris Carton - WFAN
- Jason Collins inspired UMass' Derrick Gordon to come out as gay - DeAnte Price - Sporting News
- Jason Collins’ return to NBA inspired Derrick Gordon to come out as gay - Dan Feldman - NBC Sports
- Derrick Gordon announcement that he's gay a sign of progress - Jon Wertheim - Sports Illustrated
Derrick Gordon, Matt Dooley and the Jason Collins effect - Jonathan Capehart - Washington Post