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Winners and losers of the week in LGBTQ sports

Every week, our managing editor runs down the big stories of the past seven days.

Shelby Weldon

Time again for my weekly ranking of the winners and losers in LGBTQ sports, based on the stories we’ve shared since last Saturday.


Losers: Florida legislature sneaks trans athlete ban through at the 11th hour

Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis listens to a speaker at a...
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis listens to a speaker at a press conference at the Eau Gallie High School aviation hangar, March 22, 2021.
Photo by Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

After a transgender athlete ban initially failed to pass, Florida politicians tack one on to an unrelated bill at the last minute. Gov. Ron DeSantis has vowed to sign it.


Losers: Those telling the lie that Michael Sam was too distracted to make it in the NFL

Michael Sam in the St. Louis locker room during ESPN's powerful ESPYs package.
Michael Sam in the St. Louis locker room during ESPN’s powerful ESPYs package.

Michael Sam was not distracted by TV or LGBTQ groups. It’s everyone else who couldn’t handle it.


Winners: Phoenix Rising host San Diego Loyal and Collin Martin months after gay slur incident

Syndication: Arizona Republic
Phoenix Rising’s Aodhan Quinn (14) crosses against SD Loyal’s Jack Blake (7) during the season opener at the Phoenix Rising’s new stadium on April 30, 2021.
Patrick Breen/The Republic via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Rising coach Rick Schantz talks about what he’s learned and how he’s approaching LGBTQ inclusion for the 2021 season.


Winner: Author Julia Serano counters anti-transgender backlash with cautious optimism

The author of the iconic book on trans life, “Whipping Girl,” beams up to The Trans Sporter Room podcast to discuss writing and the reality of being trans in 2021 America.


Winner: Russian tennis star expresses support for LGBTQ athletes: ‘Those who come out are doing it right’

Daria Kasatkina, who climbed to No. 10 in the WTA rankings, opened up about dating women in a TV interview.


Loser: Kim Mulkey brings problematic history with LGBTQ athletes to LSU

NCAA Womens Basketball: Sweet Sixteen-Michigan at Baylor
Baylor Lady Bears head coach Kim Mulkey gestures against the Michigan Wolverines in the Sweet Sixteen of the 2021 Women’s NCAA Tournament at Alamodome on March 27, 2021.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Hall of Famer won three National Titles at Baylor. But Mulkey also insisted Brittney Griner remain in the closet during her time at the university.


Winner: Katie Sowers opens up about future plans: ‘I’m not saying my NFL days are over’

The groundbreaking coach says she’s still determined to be a head coach one day.


Winner: NCAA tournament run was extra sweet for out gay volleyball coach

Keith Anderson with the Sun Belt trophy won by the Texas State volleyball team.
Keith Anderson

The impact of coming out in college athletics has made my job and career so much more enjoyable,’ Keith Anderson says.


Winner: For college swimming coach, being gay no longer a big thing and that’s why it’s a great thing

Matthew Kinney
Matthew Kinney

Matthew Kinney persevered through some dark times as he was coming out, but that is all well behind him now.


Winner: A gay polyamorous storyline empowered out wrestler Leo London to come out publicly

Leo London Jordan Nepon

Canadian/Greek pro wrestler Leo London’s time in The Gentlemen’s Club stable helped him see the importance of actual LGBTQ people portraying LGBTQ characters in wrestling.


Loser: Water polo player who called this out Spanish competitor gay slur twice in match

Victor Gutierrez
Victor Gutiérrez

Victor Gutiérrez says the slurs came during and after a heated match with a rival Spanish team. The player accused of making the slurs denies using them.


Winner: A new team, a new series, and a strong start for Charlie Martin

Jack Fabby, left, and Charlie Martin hold their trophies.
Jack Fabby, left, and Charlie Martin hold their trophies.
Charlie Martin

Along with teammate Jack Fabby, the pioneering endurance racer ran first and second in the Britcar Endurance Series opener at Silverstone.


Winners: It’s Lesbian Visibility Day! Lez celebrate those in sports all week long

From April 26 through May 2, the world celebrates lesbians, and we’re shining a spotlight on the athletes, coaches and other sports folks who are women who love women


Winners: Victory for trans athletes: Federal judge tosses lawsuit

A federal judge in Connecticut dismissed a lawsuit challenging the inclusive policy that allows transgender student-athletes to compete according to their gender identity.


Winner: Trans runner Nikki Hiltz recounts what motivated them to come out

Nikki Hiltz
Nikki Hiltz, Instagram

After organizing an LGBTQ virtual 5K run and witnessing several competitors come out, Hiltz decided to become more visible as their authentic transgender self.


Loser: That’s quite enough, Caitlyn Jenner. We’re done.

Caitlyn Jenner and Dawn Ennis
Caitlyn Jenner and Dawn Ennis. Jenner is the trans woman on the left.
Deana Mitchell/Shelby Weldon

Olympian turned reality star Caitlyn Jenner told me just one year ago she’s not interested in politics. And now she wants to be governor? Bitch, please. And as if that were not enough, there was this:


Winner: National champion marathoner is out and will compete in the Summer Olympics

Aoife Cooke competed for Arkansas Tech. Now she will rep Ireland as an out athlete at the Olympics.


That’s all for this week! I’ll bring you another list of winners and losers next Saturday. Got a name I missed, or want to challenge my choices? Comment here or on Facebook or Instagram, tweet at us, message me via any social media, or just plain email me at outsports@gmail.com Thanks!