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Here are 20 LGBT college basketball players and 20 coaches who have been out while competing

College basketball is on the mind, as the Division I NCAA basketball tournaments — March Madness — take hold on television. Brackets will be spoiled, brackets will be won. And America is here for all of it.

Over the years — particularly the last decade — college basketball has offered an opportunity for LGBT athletes and coaches to come out publicly, assert their presence and inspire others.

We have seen transgender, gay, lesbian and bisexual players and coaches across genders and NCAA divisions.

While dozens or hundreds of other players and coaches have been out to family, friends and members of their team, these are some of some of the people we know of who have been publicly out in the media or clearly out on social media. If you know of more, please email us at outsports@gmail.com.

Out players

Izzy Allen, Palm Beach State
Allen came out while playing high school basketball in Colorado,

Kye Allums, George Washington
Allums was the first publicly out trans athlete in NCAA D1 basketball, playing for the women’s team at George Washington.

Nicholle Aston, Cornell
Aston came out to her Big Red teammates freshman year before deciding to do a more public story years later in 2016.

Maria Berrum, Oakton Community
Berrum came out publicly in a Chicago Tribune article in 2016, saying her teammates and coaches in both high school and college were supportive.

Emily Easom, Sacramento State
Easom came out publicly in a newspaper article after transferring from Portland State. She now coaches high school basketball.

Taylor Emery, Gulf Coast State College and Virginia Tech
Emery was publicly out while winning a national junior college title with Gulf Coast State College before moving on to Virginia Tech.

Jess Farmer, Elon
Farmer came out while dating a fellow Elon athlete on the school’s softball team.

Hunter Fromang, Randolph-Macon
The center was part of a very successful men’s basketball team at Randolph-Macon.

Derrick Gordon, Massachusetts and Seton Hall
Gordon was the first NCAA Division I men’s basketball player to come out publicly in 2014 while at UMass. He then also played for Seton Hall. No player in D1 men’s basketball has come out publicly since.

Jaide Hinds-Clarke, Richmond
Hinds-Clarke started an on-campus organization for Black LGBT students like her.

Bree Horrocks, Purdue
Horrocks played for the Boilermakers in the NCAA Tournament while a center on the Purdue women’s basketball team.

Navi Huskey, Long Beach City
Huskey was a successful and award-winning player for Long Beach City College in Southern California and a trailblazer for trans women in women’s sports.

Gabrielle Ludwig, Mission
Ludwig came out publicly as a trans community college basketball player in 2012, in addition to being one of the tallest and oldest women’s basketball players in the country at 6-foot-8 and age 50.

Jallen Messersmith, Benedictine
Messersmith played in the NAIA for this religious school in Kansas, which tried to bar him from hanging a rainbow flag in his window after coming out.

Joe Morrell, St. John Fisher
Morrell came out publicly in 2022 while a junior at St. John Fisher College in New York. His team went to the NCAA tournament that year.

Max Nagle, Hollins
The transgender basketball player came out as trans to his Hollins University women’s basketball team and played with the Virginia-based college team after coming out.

Sedona Prince, Oregon
The star of the Oregon Ducks inspired others to come out in their own lives. Her college career ended in 2022 with an injury.

Derek Schell, Hillsdale
When Schell came out as an NCAA Division II gay athlete in 2013, he did so at a Michigan school that’s still on the Campus Pride Worst List for LGBTQ students.

Jesse Taylor, Dakota Wesleyan
Taylor came out in 2015 on the NAIA Dakota Wesleyan basketball team after being a multi-sport athlete in high school.

Courtney Thrun, Brandeis
Thrun found a culture where she could thrive as an LGBTQ athlete, under coach Carol Simon

Out coaches

Jennifer Azzi, San Francisco
While still the head coach at the University of San Francisco, Azzi came out publicly before stepping down from her coaching position months later.

Melanie Balcomb, Purdue and Ohio Dominican
Balcomb came out publicly while working for Dawn Staley at South Carolina, before going on to coach at Purdue and becoming the head coach at Division II Ohio Dominican University.

Becky Burke, Buffalo
Burke, the head coach of the University of Buffalo women’s basketball team, was not shy about sharing her proposal to her girlfriend in 2022.

Chris Burns, Bryant
In 2015, Bryant College assistant coach Chris Burns became the first publicly out Division I men’s basketball coach.

Kevin DeMille, George Washington and Vanderbilt
DeMille has been out as an assistant coach for both the Colonial and Commodore women’s basketball teams.

Lexie Gerson, Arcadia and Harcum
Gerson was an assistant coach at the D3 Arcadia University, and then head coach at the JC Harcum College. She is still coaching basketball today.

Blair Hardiek, San Francisco
She was assistant to her wife, Jennifer Azzi. She is now an executive for the Las Vegas Aces.

Layne Ingram, Lansing Community
Ingram is the rare out trans person in college basketball, coaching the women’s basketball team at Lansing Community College in Michigan.

Jason Jaramillo, Sarah Lawrence
The longtime leader in the National Gay Basketball Association has also been a women’s basketball assistant coach for Sarah Lawrence College in New York.

Matt Lynch, Chowhan and USC-Salkehatchie
Lynch was out while an assistant coach at the D2 Chowhan University in North Carolina. He is now the head men’s basketball coach at the junior college University of South Carolina Salkehatchie.

Kelly McNiff, Wisconsin-Platteville
McNiff has been the head coach of the women’s basketball team at the University of Wisconsin Platteville since 2019.

Curt Miller, Indiana
When announced as the next head women’s basketball coach at Indiana University in 2012, Miller publicly appreciated his male partner, effectively coming out.

Ryan Mizner, Central Michigan
Mizner came out while an assistant coach for the Central Michigan men’s basketball team, though he has since left the college coaching profession.

Sherri Murrell, Portland State
The first publicly out head coach in all of Division I basketball, Murrell coached Portland State women’s basketball from 2007 to 2015.

Julie Shaw, La Verne
Shaw was the head coach of the D3 University of La Verne women’s basketball team before working with the Los Angeles Clippers.

Carol Simon, Brandeis
As head coach of the Division III Brandeis women’s basketball team, Simon has inspired at least one out player to feel she belongs.

DJ Slifer, Texas A&M—Kingsville and Lynn
Slifer has been out as an assistant coach at Texas A&M University—Kingsville and Lynn University, both Division II.

Lindsay Werntz, Denver
An assistant coach for the Denver Pioneers women’s basketball team, married to head coach Doshia Woods.

Stephanie White, Vanderbilt
White was the head coach at Vanderbilt from 2016 to 2021 and is currently a head coach in the WNBA for the Connecticut Sun.

Doshia Woods, Denver
Head coach for the University of Denver women’s basketball team, Woods is married to her assistant coach Lindsay Werntz.

Read the full article here

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