Seton Hall's win Saturday over
Villanova secured a spot for the university in the NCAA tournament
and a place in the history books for Derrick Gordon, the first –
and so far only – openly gay Division 1 college basketball player.
The 24-year-old Gordon came out in
April of 2014 in an ESPN profile while attending the University of
While at UMass, Gordon helped the
Minutemen reach the NCAA tournament, but he was closeted at the time.
This year, Gordon
becomes the first openly gay player to compete in the NCAA
Gordon has said that coming out helped
him focus on his game.
“All last season, that was something
I was always thinking about,” Gordon told the AP last year. “It
was always in the back of my mind. This year, everybody knows. So
everywhere we went I didn't have to worry about it. It was like what
you see is what you get. I am who I am.”
“It just made me forget about that
and just concentrate on my game.”
“Anywhere we went, everything was
positive,” Gordon added. “I didn't hear anything negative. No
one came up to me.”