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First openly gay player in the NCAA Tournament (Seton Hall v. Gonzaga)

evan-sahagian-derrick-gordonX400Derrick Gordon, 24, made history this weekend when his team, Seton Hall University, beat Villanova University, ensuring he will be the first out player invited to compete in the NCAA tournament this year, USA Today reported.

Playing in the tournament has been a dream for Gordon, a guard who transferred from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, to Seton Hall, where he currently plays as a graduate student, according to the paper.

Gordon came out last year at UMass with the support of his coach and fans. He said he was tired of hiding who he was. “I just didn’t want to hide anymore, in any way,” Gordon told ESPN. “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?'”

When he came out, his coach, Derek Kellog, was proud of the step Gordon took to become the first out player in the division. “What he did, coming out to the world, took tremendous courage,” Kellog said in 2014.

Seton Hall, a #6 seed, is scheduled to play Gonzaga, a #11 seed this Thursday at 6:57 PT on Tru TV

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