Seton Hall Lands UMass Transfer Derrick Gordon | Zagsblog
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Sunday / April 14.
  • Seton Hall Lands UMass Transfer Derrick Gordon

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    derekSeton Hall has landed a commitment from UMass transfer Derrick Gordon, the first openly gay player in Division 1 men’s basketball.

    He will be eligible immediately as a graduate transfer, giving the Pirates some backcourt depth after losing transfers Sterling Gibbs (UConn) and Jaren Sina (George Washington).

    In a text to SNY.tv, Gordon added: “It’s a great situation for me to play to my full potential and to play in one of the best conferences in the country.”

    Gordon, who played at nearby St. Patrick High School, averaged averaged 9.8 points and 4.9 rebounds last season at UMass.

    “I feel Derrick will be a great fit for Seton Hall,” St. Pat’s coach Chris Chavannes said. “Derrick has a good feel for how to play the game on both ends of the floor. He has a relentless work ethic and unbelievable amount of confidence in himself. While it’s never easy to replace a player of Sterling’s ability and numbers, Derrick will certainly help bridge that gap and bring some added plusses on both ends.”

    Jerry Carino of Gannett New Jersey has more on Seton Hall taking in Gordon, who came out as the first openly gay male player in D-1 basketball in April 2014.

    “I looked at this as kind of a win-win situation for me,” Gordon told WSOU, Seton Hall’s student-run radio station, in a lengthy interview Sunday night. “It’s about 25 minutes away from my house. The Big East is one of the top conferences in the country. I’ll be able to go there and play to my full potential that I know I can. I couldn’t be happier.”

    Gordon acknowledged Friday’s controversial firing of Rev. Warren Hall, a popular campus priest who ministered to Seton Hall sports teams. Hall tweeted that he was removed because he showed public support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality in a Facebook post. A university spokeswoman said the personnel decision was made by Newark Archbishop John Myers.

    “When I visited the campus today everybody made me feel comfortable,” Gordon told WSOU, noting that he met with President Gabriel Esteban. “I was there with my family. They made me feel comfortable to the point where it was a safe environment, even with the situation that happened with the priest two days ago. It felt like a family environment, and that was very big for me in my book. The visit went better than what I expected.”

    Seton Hall previously landed Kansas State transfer Jevon Thomas, who must sit one season before becoming eligible in 2016-17.

    Photo: New York Times

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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