Around the Nation (April 9): UMass guard becomes first Division I to come out as gay; Browns remain optimistic about signing Mack

Associated Press Published:

Associated Press

COLLEGE

UMass men's basketball player Gordon comes out as gay in interview

AMHERST, Mass. -- UMass basketball player Derrick Gordon says in a televised interview that he is gay.

Gordon made the announcement on ESPN on Wednesday, becoming the first openly gay player in Division I men's basketball.

The guard was the Minutemen's fourth-leading scorer with 9.4 points per game last season, when UMass reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1998.

A transfer from Western Kentucky, Gordon played at high school powerhouse St. Patrick in New Jersey.

Gordon says he was inspired by NBA player Jason Collins and NFL prospect Michael Sam, who came out within the past year. He says: "I want to be myself. I don't want to hide and be someone I'm not."

FOOTBALL

Browns remain optimistic about signing Alex Mack

CLEVELAND -- Browns coach Mike Pettine isn't concerned about Pro Bowl center Alex Mack missing the team's offseason program as he tests free agency.

Mack recently visited with the Jacksonville Jaguars, who have not yet offered him a contract.

The Browns would have five days to match any offer to Mack, who was tagged as Cleveland's transition player before free agency began. Mack can play next season in Cleveland for $10 million.

Pettine calls Mack's situation "fluid" and says there's some optimism the Browns may hold onto the Pro Bowler because "nothing has happened so far."

On Tuesday, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said he was hopeful Mack would stay with the Browns. When asked if the team was prepared to match a Jacksonville offer, Haslam smiled and said: "We want Alex to be a Cleveland Brown."

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