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My-King Johnson To Be First Openly Gay Football Scholarship Player In NCAA History

The athlete says he's been out of the closet since the age of 12.

My-King Johnson is set to become the first active openly gay scholarship player in the history of major-college football after being recruited by the Arizona Wildcats.

“I do feel like when I say that [I’m gay], it can put a target on my back,” Johnson told AZCentral. “But whatever.”

The 6-foot-4 defensive end shared that when he came out to Arizona coach Vincent Amey during the recruiting process, he was thrilled to hear “we want you to be a Wildcat” as a response.

“I said, ’Look, you are who you are, I am who I am, and I’m going to coach you the same way. I’m going to treat you the same way. I’m going to get on you the same way as everybody else. There’s no difference. You do what you do,'” Amey told AZCentral. “I said, ’When the players find out, especially my room, I’m going to tell [those] dudes: Look, you gotta have his back.'”

17-year-old Johnson said he was 12 when he came out to family and friends, explaining that it was just a part of who he is.

“I’m a very honest person,” he said. “I just don’t see how I could be living an honest, truthful life and have that in the background.”

Adam Salandra is a writer, performer and host in Los Angeles. When he's not covering the latest in pop culture, you can find him playing with his French Bulldog puppy or hovering over the table of food at any social gathering.