Jacksonville Jaguars associate strength coach Kevin Maxen came out publicly in an interview with Outsports on Thursday.
“I don’t want to feel like I have to think about it anymore,” Maxen said. “I don’t want to feel like I have to lie about who I am seeing, or why I am living with someone else. I want to be vocal in support of people living how they want to live, but I also want to just live and not feel fear about how people will react.”
Maxen, according to Outsports, is believed to be the first publicly out male coach in major American men’s pro sports. Multiple female coaches in the NFL — including 49ers assistant Katie Sowers, who became the league’s first openly gay coach in 2017 — have come out in recent years.
“In an environment that is diversifying,” Marcus Pollard, Jaguars director of player development, told Outsports, “it is a privilege to work alongside Kevin who is hardworking, dedicated and thriving as a strength and conditioning coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars.”
Maxen was a strength coach prior to Jacksonville with the Baylor and Vanderbilt football teams. He played linebacker at Western Connecticut State University, a Division III program.
“It wasn’t until recently — and with the immense love and support of my family, my friends, colleagues and peers, and the courage and sacrifice from my partner — that I realized I have the right and responsibility to love and be loved, and that maybe sharing this will hopefully give someone else the strength to accept their own life and take control of their own story,” Maxen said.
(Photo: Roy K. Miller / Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)