(CBS) While the NFL awaits its first active gay player, one former player has officially come out.
Former San Francisco 49ers offensive tackle Kwame Harris admitted he was gay in an interview with CNN.
“I want people, whether gay athletes, athletes still in the closet, or youths who are not sure what their sexuality is to know those are common feelings,” Harris told CNN. “Don’t feel alone in having them.”
Suspicions of Harris’ homosexuality first spiked after he was arrested in January after a dispute with a supposed boyfriend.
Harris, a former first-round draft pick, said he knew he was gay while playing, but kept it a secret out of fear.
“You want to escape the despair and turmoil and your mind goes to dark places,” Harris said. “I’m happy today, and I’m glad they were just ideas and I didn’t act on any of them.
“The cost was great (to) not speak candidly … open about myself in complete manner. If I could have done it differently, I would have hoped I found the strength.”