Butler linebacker Xavier Colvin announced to his teammates earlier this month that he is gay.
Per Cyd Zeigler of Outsports, Colvin explained his decision to come out publicly:
“I don't want to disappoint my teammates or coaches or be looked at as different. So seeing other people come out and be OK with being themselves made me realize I could be OK with being myself.
“A lot of times when it comes to gay men in sports we feel like people think we will be ‘less-than’ because of our personal life. I got so caught up trying to please others that I fell into a path of always trying to help others and not myself. Finally I became courageous enough to be myself.”
Zeigler noted that Colvin told his teammates on a stage because "he wanted his entire team to know who he truly was."
After the announcement, Colvin said he was met with plenty of support.
"Afterwards I got texts and phone calls,” Colvin said. “The freshmen who didn't know me came and shook my hand. And they all said, 'we’ve got your back.' They told me how proud they were of me. Not even a single negative reaction. It was all positive.”
Colvin is the son of former NFL linebacker Roosevelt Colvin, who won two Super Bowl titles as a member of the New England Patriots in 2003 and 2004.
“Me and my dad, we have a great relationship,” Xavier told David Woods of the Indianapolis Star. “I get told a lot that I’m like him.”
Butler defensive lineman Connor Andras told Woods he "couldn’t be more proud of" Colvin, and his choice to announce his sexuality in public "really inspired me to be a better person and just be comfortable in my own skin.”
A redshirt sophomore, Colvin appeared in nine games during the 2016 season and recorded six tackles. He recorded three total tackles in Butler's season opener Sept. 2 against Illinois State.