D’Qwell Jackson, Chris Gocong and Eric Barton join Athlete Ally

Browns linebacker D’Qwell Jackson and former teammates Chris Gocong and Eric Barton have become ambassadors for Athlete Ally, an organization dedicated to ending homophobia in sports, the trio announced via press release on Friday.

Per the release, the addition of these three new Athlete Ally Ambassadors is part of an ongoing effort to empower professional athletes to help make sports a welcoming environment for all. Former Browns linebacker and Athlete Ally Ambassador Scott Fujita directly helped grow the movement in Cleveland with these new additions.

“I believe that everyone should be treated the same,” said Jackson. “That’s my thought as a person and as a teammate. Joining Athlete Ally is my way of letting it be known that I would respect any teammate – gay or straight – it just doesn’t matter.”

Chris Gocong, a member of the Browns for the past two seasons prior to being released earlier this spring, added that  Fujita was a “pioneer” in the movement to create an inclusive environment in the NFL. “I feel it is my duty to help continue that work as the league moves from tolerance to acceptance,” he said. “I want to support any athlete to feel more comfortable and confident being himself.”

As Athlete Ally Ambassadors, Jackson, Gocong, and Barton join the NFL contingent of Fujita, Brendon Ayanbadejo, Chris Kluwe, Donte Stallworth, and  Connor Barwin, as well as tennis greats Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish, NBA star Kenneth Faried.

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  • JHop

    Is it just me, or does Donte Stallworth seem out of place, especially in comparison to the other Ambassadors?

  • Garry_Owen

    Here I was, thinking this had something to do with a side street between two tall buildings where athletes congregated – to maybe have bare-knuckle, free-for-all fights, ala “Fight Club?”. Much to my disappointment, it has nothing to do with that all. Just a typo in the headline that bait-and-switched me onto a homophobiaphobia story.

  • Jaker

    *Ally.

    You wrote “Alley” in the title, which made me think that they were sponsor by the Sporting Goods store and not the organization you talked about.

  • Jaker

    I can already see D’Qwell burning Mingo’s hand with chemicals and talking to him about Cleveland futility.

    “It’s only after we’ve lost everything, until we are free to do anything”

    Wow that would actually make sense

  • Bruce

    sounds gay

  • Kick

    Great to see D’Qwell supporting equality. Makes me happy to be a Browns fan.

  • Webster

    I can’t think of anything negative to say about the guy. Maybe his pecs tear too easily? Probably not, but I’m having a hard time doing this.