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Costas Out: There Should Be Better Gay Athlete Stories

Bob Costas, pocket-sized television sports reporter and popular feud instigator, gave a long, detailed interview to as to why NBC neglected to make a bigger story out Australian diver Matthew Mitcham's gold medal victory, since he was the only openly gay man at the Games. NBC had already written a letter of apology to the site for "omitting" Mitcham's story, but Costas went further, answering writer James Hillis' questions as best he could. Some of Costas' mea culpas about that story: • "I was not focused on it. It wasn’t like I was sitting there thinking, “Gee, I have a chance to get this in.” It was just something that wasn’t on my radar screen to be perfectly honest. But had it been, I would have thought it was a worthwhile thing to mention." •"What’s more important from my perspective – since I don’t know all the ins and outs of this specific thing – but from my perspective, I think that these issues are more than valid. And if a person is already out and willing to talk about it, then certainly that’s significant in its own way. Just as it is significant if someone is the first African-American coach in the SEC [a Southern college football conference]. Or if someone is the first woman to hold this position or that [position]. These are significant issues, and they’re interesting. " It's hard to tell if this interview is sincere or damage control by NBC. I don't doubt Costas' motivations for doing the interview — he answered the questions in his typically articulate news-wonky way — but there also seems to be bit of story-teasing for an upcoming "Costas Now!" episode where the issue will be handled more Costas Now-y. Either way, it's good of him to participate in the interview. And congrats to AfterElton to keep pursuing the story even after the Olympics have faded from memory. NBC's Bob Costas Discusses Gays In Sports []


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