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Jan 30, 2013 10:37 PM by

49ers' Chris Culliver: Openly gay player not welcome

NEW ORLEANS - The NFL has never had an openly gay active player, but if there was one, 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver said he wouldn't want that player on his team.

"I don't do the gay guys man," Culliver said to shock jock Artie Lange on Tuesday, according to Yahoo Sports. "I don't do that."

Later in the interview, Lange asked Culliver if there are any gay players on the 49ers roster, "No, we don't got no gay people on the team, they got to get up out of here if they do," Culliver said. "Can't be with that sweet stuff. Nah ... can't be ... in the locker room man. Nah."

Culliver later suggested that it would be OK for homosexual players to come out 10 years after they retire.

Culliver's comments come on the heels of the recent allegations against former San Francisco offensive tackle Kwame Harris. Harris is alleged to have assaulted a former boyfriend in August. Harris was never outed as gay during his six-year career with the 49ers (2003-07) and Raiders (2008).

The 49ers probably won't be too thrilled with Culliver's comments. Six months ago, San Francisco became the NFL's first team to join "It Gets Better," an anti-bullying campaign targeted at teenagers who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

Safety Donte Whitner was one of four players who made a video for the campaign, according to the San Jose Mercury News. "The 49ers are proud to join to let all LGBT teens know that it gets better," Whitner said according to the Mercury News. "On behalf of the entire 49ers organization, we are on your side, and we promise, it gets better."

Culliver, the 49ers' No. 3 cornerback, had 48 tackles this season and tied for second on the team with two interceptions.

The 49ers released this statement on Wednesday regarding Culliver's remarks, "The San Francisco 49ers reject the comments that were made [Tuesday], and have addressed the matter with Chris. There is no place for discrimination within our organization at any level. We have and always will proudly support the LGBT community."

Hours after the 49ers released their statement, Culliver released a statement of his own through the team, "The derogatory comments I made yesterday were a reflection of thoughts in my head, but they are not how I feel. It has taken me seeing them in print to realize that they are hurtful and ugly. Those discriminating feelings are truly not in my heart. Further, I apologize to those who I have hurt and offended, and I pledge to learn and grow from this experience."


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