Jallen (JAY-lin) Messersmith of Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., has come out and is believed to be the first openly gay player in U.S. men's college basketball.
Messersmith told The Associated Press on Wednesday he revealed his sexual orientation to teammates at the NAIA school before last season and approached Outsports.com about telling his story. Outsports.com is a website that covers gay issues in sports.
Messersmith said he's received nothing but positive feedback since the story was posted on Tuesday. He said he wanted to come out with the hope it helps other athletes feel comfortable about who they are.
He said he decided to come out long before Jason Collins became the first active NBA player to announce he's gay.