NFL teams scouting potential players at the annual Combine in Indianapolis ask players pretty much every question under the sun. This year, with all the hubbub over Manti Te'o and his fake girlfriend who turned out to be a guy, at least one prospect was asked which sex floated his boat. From Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio:
Case in point: Colorado tight end Nick Kasa was asked a stream of questions that touched on sexual preference at the Scouting Combine.
"They ask you like, ‘Do you have a girlfriend?’ Are you married?’ Do you like girls?’" Kasa told ESPN Radio Denver on Tuesday. "Those kinds of things, and you know it was just kind of weird. But they would ask you with a straight face, and it’s a pretty weird experience altogether."
Florio is bothered by the question, writing:
It’s more than weird. It’s troubling. While on one hand teams try to throw players off the prepared answers that make them seem as complex as a cardboard cutout, on the other hand that effort should be undertaken without touching on inappropriate subject matter. The league should be troubled, too. And the league should contact Kasa immediately, with a very specific follow-up question: "Which team(s) asked you that?"
This is not new. In 2010, I interviewed former University of Maryland player and now openly gay Greco-Roman wrestler Akil Patterson about his draft experience:
It was not a question one would expect to hear from an NFL scout during a predraft interview: "Are you gay?"
Akil Patterson was stunned, later learning that an assistant coach from his college days mentioned it to the scout. "I said yes," Patterson recalls of the 2007 interview. "We've got a lot of guys in the league who are," the scout replied.
It shouldn't matter one way or the other what sexual orientation Kasa or Patterson are, but NFL teams are obsessed with knowing everything about a player. And let's say it -- the Combine is really gay, in a stereotypical sense. You have a bunch of men standing around watching other men being weighed, doing bench presses, running, throwing and jumping, all wearing skimpy, tight-fitting clothing. When Kasa was asked, "Do you like girls," his response should have been, "Do you? Not that's there's anything wrong with that."