Think you know what it's like to be a closeted gay NFL player? Kwame Harris breaks it down.
Joyce Park stashed this in The Sporting Life
6'7" and 320 lb at his playing weight, Kwame Harris looked like a phenom on the offensive line at Stanford and eventually the 49ers and Raiders. But his secret sexuality isolated him from his family, teammates, coaches, and potential lovers -- until the truth came out in a moment of violence.
"I was always on time, lifted weights, watched film, hung out with my teammates, built those relationships," he says. "But I also had to spend energy pretending to be something I was not. Having secrets takes something out of you. If the world had been more comfortable with gay players on the football field, it wouldn't have been so consuming when it came up. Everything would not have been filtered through that, being gay. When I had a bad game or if we lost or if I did something awful, it was because I was gay. It was the easiest way for me to beat myself up."