Kyler Murray won the Heisman Trophy on Saturday, and then he quickly apologized for anti-gay messages he shared on Twitter years earlier.
The Oklahoma Sooners quarterback was sent scrambling shortly after one of the biggest nights of his life when tweets surfaced from when he was a teenager showing Murray using terms like “queer” in not the most flattering fashion.
“I apologize for the tweets that have come to light tonight from when I was 14 and 15,” Kyler tweeted. “I used a poor choice of word that doesn’t reflect who I am or what I believe. I did not intend to single out any individual or group.”
As far as apologies go, this was a pretty weak one. To not use the terms “gay” or “LGBTQ” reflects an avoidance of the issue. However, the fact that he issued an apology and stated a broad embrace of inclusion is important. It’s a lot better than a guy like Buffalo Sabres captain Jack Eichel has shown. Eichel has never apologized for awful anti-gay tweets as a teenager.
Barring other information, I think we should take Murray’s word at face value.
Murray’s win of the Heisman was a bit of a surprise to some, who thought Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa would take the trophy. Murray threw 37 touchdowns in 2018 and ran for 11 more. Alabama will play Oklahoma in the national FBS semifinal Dec. 29.
I’ve said over and over that adults should not lose job opportunities for idiot tweets they sent when they were minors or teenagers. The same applies to Murray.
NFL teams should ask him about the incident, but they should also consider his apology more than they consider his stupid, bigoted tweets from six years ago, as long as he shows contrition in interviews. There are literally countless gay men in the NFL and MLB (he’s been drafted by the Oakland A’s), and anyone drafting Murray should make sure he would embrace any teammate regardless of sexual orientation.
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