Chris Culliver Apologizes for Homophobic Comments

NFL player issues a baffling response to concerns over his anti-gay statements.

Posted: 02/01/2013 09:00 AM EST
Chris Culliver

After the media groundswell shed light on his homophobic statements made during an interview, San Francisco 49er Chris Culliver has issued an apology. His response amounts to this: That he's not really a homophobe, but the thoughts inside his head came out that way.

"The derogatory comments I made yesterday,” he said, “were a reflection of thoughts in my head, but they are not how I feel.” The confusing apology comes nearly a week after Culliver said no gays were welcomed on his football team, in the locker room and that a gay teammate should stay in the closet.

"It has taken me seeing them in print,” Culliver’s apology continued, “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." Before saying he was sorry, Culliver’s teammates and head coach rejected his anti-gay comments.

Coincidentally, Culliver isn't the only 49er having an issue with the gay community. Linebacker Ahmad Brooks and nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga, who both participated in the much-heralded "it gets better" video last summer, have denied ever taking part in the video project.

The two said they were unaware that the campaign had to do with bullying experienced by the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. When presented with the actual video in an interview, Brooks clarified he thought it was an anti-bullying campaign, not for gay rights. 


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 (Photo: Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

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