Posted February 28, 2013

Brendon Ayanbadejo: Players have to say they’re straight to keep draft stock

NFL Draft, Scouting Combine
Nick Kasa (left) opened a can of worms with his revelation that teams asked about his sexual orientation at the combine. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Nick Kasa (left) opened a can of worms with his revelation that teams asked about his sexual orientation at the combine. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

During a radio interview on Thursday, Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell reportedly said that he had been asked a line of questions similar to the “Do you like girls?” queries Colorado tight end Nick Kasa admitted he faced at the NFL combine.

“Yeah, yeah … just like that,” Bell said. “I mean, I got asked so many of them, I don’t remember them all, but that was definitely a couple questions that I got asked, too.

Kasa told the CJ and Kreckman Show that, “They ask, like, ‘Do you have a girlfriend? Are you married? Do you like girls?’ Those kinds of things.”

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello issued a statement Wednesday, saying that the league will investigate Kasa’s claim:

“We will look into the report on the questioning of Nick Kasa at the Scouting Combine,” NFL Spokesman Greg Aiello said in a statement. “It is league policy to neither consider nor inquire about sexual orientation in the hiring process.

“In addition, there are specific protections in our collective bargaining agreement with the players that prohibit discrimination against any player, including on the basis of sexual orientation.”

Kasa and Bell’s remarks come on the heels of Manti Te’o being asked during his combine press conference if he currently has a “real” girlfriend, and just weeks following San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver taking substantial heat for making the comment that a gay teammate “can’t be … in the locker room.”

“I don’t do the gay guys, man. I don’t do that,” Culliver told radio host Artie Lange. “Ain’t got no gay people on the team. They gotta get up outta here if they do. Can’t be with that sweet stuff.”

Ravens linebacker Brandon Ayabadejo, a noted advocate for equal right and gay marriage, spoke out against Culliver’s comments in New Orleans. And he joined MSNBC’s The Ed Show with Ed Schultz on Wednesday, to discuss what might have gone on inside the combine’s interview rooms.

“Teams are really fickle, there’s all kinds of things they want to know,” Ayanbadejo said. “A lot of teams really want to talk to you, get a feel for your personality, see what you’re like. If you give the wrong answers, that could be the difference between going to that team in the first round and slipping to another in the draft.”

Ayanbadejo said that he hopes the league soon has “our Jackie Robinson, our pioneer for gay rights and equality,” but that incoming rookies should tell teams what they want to hear.

“Selfishly, I think players need to say that they’re straight right now,” Ayanbadejo told Schultz. “You need to get drafted as high as you can get drafted, get the money while you can …

“The way things are going right now with the bigotry that still exists and discrimination that still exists within the locker room and sports arena in general, I think you need to say, ‘Hey, I’m straight, I love women’, and keep things so-called normal. Maybe later, once you’ve established yourself and when we break down some of these walls in the NFL, players will be more comfortable to be who they are.”

You can watch all of Schultz’s report, which includes his interview of Ayanbadejo, below:

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40 comments
M as in Mancy
M as in Mancy

Great. Anytime Tebow, gun control, or homosexuality news breaks the nutcases with no clue about football or life come out.

Citizendan
Citizendan

besides anal, what does MPS stand for?

102947583
102947583

If this guy is straight why doesn't he just answer the question and move on...He wants to be an attention white knight.

Charlie P
Charlie P

NFL locker room must be a pretty tough environment seeing that Ayanbadejo, who is as vocal as they get, hasn't yet come out himself.

JasonMacBride
JasonMacBride

It may very well be illegal to ask the question, just like it is illegal to ask a job candidate's age. Nor is there any sensible reason to ask the question. The odds are there are gay players on every team and it just hasn't been a problem.  

KenKeller
KenKeller

While I don't think your sexual orientation should be an issue, I don't understand why I or anyone else who doesn't accept the homosexual lifestyle is labeled a bigot.

can
can

Jeif How ignorant can a poster be? I thought I hear it all until I heard your insensitive homophobic rant? For your information, there are many gay players tougher tan you will ever be. To play ball takes skills and determination, and no one is more determined to play the sport they love than a gay player. The problem is societal and the "idea " that gay men in the locker room will be a distraction. Seriously? I shower with gay men at the gym all the time and hey ignore me because I ignore them If you have a problem taking a shower with another man, stay out of every gym locker room, because they are everywhere. As for sports, you never played any because if you did, you would not be so insecure about your own masculinity. Please grow up.

Rick H
Rick H

I think I would admire the player who says "that's none of your business, next question please." 

Jeif
Jeif

I don't understand what the big deal is.  Teams want to know if they're going to get a guy who is going to cause unrest in the locker.  They also want to know just how tough you are.  Men are not gay.  Homposexuals are.  Men play football.  Homosexuals do not.

Edward1
Edward1

I'll agree to gays in the locker room if you agree to not teach my kids about the bees and the bees at age 5 in a public school. 

Jon8
Jon8

If the allegations are true, then this is no longer within the NFL's abilities to control. If true, these teams have broken the law! If a player feels, due to their answers to questions of sexuality,  that they were drafted lower, passed-over by a team, or not drafted at all, then this is actionable. Further, this is retroactive, such that, previous combines are subject to the same violations. In fact, if enough players feel that have been adversely impacted by these viloations of law, a motivated lawyer can put together a Class Action lawsuit against the NFL.

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

Do the GM's have to answer the same question? Coaches? Broadcasters? So why players? This is discrimination, for those that have the wit to see it. 

stabmasterarson21
stabmasterarson21

Here we go......Gaycrusader Ayanbadejo on the pulpit again.  Look, a dude shouldn't ask and shouldn't tell.  Those of us who have played sports all know what goes on in locker rooms and for the most part it's all straight-up BS as far as guys' sexcapades.  Leave it all out, be it straight, gay or anything freaky.  Esp these dudes should be being professionals.

 

But I am getting tired of hearing Ayanbadejo push his agenda.

MPS
MPS

 @102947583 The ignorance of this post is astounding.  

fmfrijoles
fmfrijoles

 @Charlie P Ayanbadejo doesn't have to be gay to defend the rights of gays.....you thinking that shows how ignorant you are.

 

Everyone has a gay friend, neighbor, co-worker, etc......whether they know it or not. For those that have friends and relatives that are gay and choose to defend their right for equal protection should not be berated or condemned for doing so.

MPS
MPS

 @Charlie P It's likely he isn't gay.  A gay guy wouldn't have the luxury of telling the truth.  Charlie, are you being intentionally ignorant, or is it authentic.  How long have you been gay?

MPS
MPS

 @KenKeller To try and understand this Ken, use your own post and take out the word 'homosexual" and replace it with Black, Hispanic, Asian, Female, Heterosexual, Christian, Jewish... do you get the picture now Ken?

RyanKoolen
RyanKoolen

@KenKeller Because it is not your place or anyone else's place to accept how someone chooses to live their life

douglitas
douglitas

 @KenKeller Because the way you even introduce the scenario is bigoted. There's no such thing as a homosexual "lifestyle." The term itself betrays your prejudice. Also, nobody's asking your opinion about whether or not you accept them so offering your negative opinion is another sign that you're a bigot. It's quite clear why someone would label you that way.

MPS
MPS

 @can Jeff has a problem because, like most men that truly hate homosexuals, he hates himself because he so desperately wants to f*** men.  

Kristian
Kristian

 @Rick H Yep me too but the problem is that if they say that, it could potentially cost them a lot of money or even a chance to play.  It would have taken an Andrew Luck type of player that's virtually guaranteed to be taken as the top 1 or 2 picks to say something like that.

fmfrijoles
fmfrijoles

 @Jeif Idiocy at its finest......Jeif is an example of why the average intelligence of the US is declining rather than increasing.

Jon8
Jon8

 @Jeif

 The "big deal" Jeif is that it is against the law!!!!

seant
seant

 @Jeif moron. so what is TO's excuse then? or Albert Haynesworth? or santonio holmes. teams want to make money, and win. probably in that order. that is why pacman jones still is playing. and why the honeybadger will get drafted. and josh brent will play again.

Bill0582000
Bill0582000

 @Jeif

 Your comment is pure idiocy and that is saying something on this site.

fmfrijoles
fmfrijoles

 @Edward1 God forbid the US should adopt a stance of sexuality as a portion of biology rather than consistently place some kind of morality upon.

 

Amusing that other western countries that have made sex education a priority are the ones who have less teen pregnancy, less STDs and higher ages of teens losing their virginity than backwards ass USA.  Ignorance is not a defense for stupidity.

JasonMacBride
JasonMacBride

 @Edward1 I don't know how to break this to you, but gay guys are already in the locker room. Always have been. Hope that doesn't spoil your day.

Kristian
Kristian

 @Edward1 It doesn't matter if you agree or not since it's just not your decision.  The second part  of your sentence is just too idiotic to even address.

seant
seant

 @Edward1 i'll agree to no kindergarten sex ed if you agree to have tim tebow STFU with his bible banging and prosthelytizing

fmfrijoles
fmfrijoles

 @stabmasterarson21 I'm sure other agendas of the past like Civil RIghts, Women's suffrage, workers rights in the workplace, etc....all got brought into law magically....with no one ever saying anything or anyone of importance standing up for an issue.

 

StabMasterarson21 lives in a fantasy world filled with chocolate and only white people and no homosexuals.....LA DEE DA.....

seant
seant

 @stabmasterarson21 pushing his agenda? yeah, pretty sure he has no interest in sleeping with you. ever.

0xfece5
0xfece5

 @stabmasterarson21 He's talking about it b/c players were in fact asked about it.  So his "agenda" sounds a lot like yours.

BosephHeyden
BosephHeyden

 @douglitas  @KenKeller Get over yourself?  You say it's a lifestyle, you get hammered.  You don't call it a lifestyle, you get hammered.  This just sounds like nitpicking and finding a reason to get offended to me.  And, just so you know, I am prejudice against stupid people.

BosephHeyden
BosephHeyden

 @Kristian  @Rick H If I were one of those types of players, I'd answer, and then at the end inform the GM that they probably shouldn't draft me since I wouldn't sign with them.  A lot of these guys are probably the older guys you see at bars creeping around and waiting for younger girls to get drunk while they stay sober.

stabmasterarson21
stabmasterarson21

 @0xfece5 He's been talking about this for a while, maybe take your eyes away from the video games for 5 minutes.

advocatethis
advocatethis

 @BosephHeyden  @douglitas  @KenKeller

 Yeah, I know this is nitpicking, but I got a laugh out of "I am prejudice against stupid people."  I always find it a good idea that when criticizing somebody else for being "stupid" you use words like "prejudiced" correctly.

seant
seant

 @stabmasterarson21 you seem to be the one who is fixated. me, I am more of a live and let live sort of person.