News (USA)

Champion divers come out together

University of Miami diver Tanner Wilfong and recent Purdue University graduate diver Jamie Bissett have made headlines by coming out together in a Roanoke Times profile.

Bissett, the reigning Canadian national 3-meter champion in diving, and Wilfong, the first active athlete in the history of University of Miami to come out as gay, have been dating for two years after meeting as competitors at the U.S. championships.

As per the Roanoke Times:

Wilfong, by agreeing to talk to The Roanoke Times for this story, is believed to be the only active male athlete in the Atlantic Coast Conference to talk publicly about being gay. He is one of seven gay male athletes to announce his sexuality publicly who is currently competing in a Power-5 conference (ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12, SEC).

Bissett is now training to represent Canada in the 2016 Olympics. He told the paper, “[Tanner] was ‘out’ when we met, and obviously, that was scary for me,” adding, “I’m thankful to have met him. I’ve learned a lot about myself through having met him and definitely credit that whole experience to where I am now.”

Wilfong described struggling with his sexuality growing up, repeating the mantra each day, “You’re not gay. You’re not gay. You’re not gay. You’re not gay.”

Now he’s singing a decidedly different tune, and is happy to be known as a “gay diver.”

“I’m OK with gay being part of my reputation. I like it,” he said. “In high school, it would have been the uncool thing for me in my mind. Now, it’s the cool thing. It’s just because the cool thing is me being myself and me not caring for a single second what anyone else thinks about me.”

Scroll down for some photos of the two divers:

A photo posted by Tanner Wilfong (@turnuptanner) on

A photo posted by Tanner Wilfong (@turnuptanner) on

A photo posted by Tanner Wilfong (@turnuptanner) on

A photo posted by Tanner Wilfong (@turnuptanner) on

A photo posted by Tanner Wilfong (@turnuptanner) on

h/t: Towleroad

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