Hundreds of young football players every year end their college careers asking questions about their chances at the pros.
Alan Gendreau is no different.
He was a standout kicker at Middle Tennessee State, and the Sun Belt Conference’s leading scorer in more than a decade.
A shaky final season for Gendreau and the Blue Raiders, though, meant he went undrafted into the NFL.
He abandoned his professional aspirations for a year until those around him encouraged him to take another shot.
It’s a story typical of countless others, but what separates Gendreau from so many others is he’s gay.
“Right now, looking back when I’m 40, I can’t say I gave it my best shot,” Gendreau told Outsports.com, which broke his story on Tuesday.
“I can’t say I really tried to make it into the NFL. Last year I did it half-assed. If I don’t give it everything I have now, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life.”
He told Outsports that he didn’t hide his sexuality while in high school, and it wasn’t an issue during his college career.
Gendreau hesitated, however, when approached by Outsports during his early time at MTSU. He agreed to a story, but used an assumed name.
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Now, he’s ready for the added attention his pro audition is garnering. A recent search on Google returned 49,000 results for “Alan Gendreau NFL.”
Gay athletes are nothing new in sports like tennis and golf, but male-dominated North American team sports appear to be the final frontier.
Outsports co-founder Cyd Zeigler told the New York Times that it seems unlikely a current NFL player would come out during the middle of his career.
However, an openly gay college athlete who cracks a pro roster would appear to be the more likely scenario.
“His goal is not to be the first,” Zeigler told The Times. “His goal is to be who he is.”
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