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Stanford Swimmer, NCAA Champion Abrahm DeVine Comes Out as Gay

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Abrahm DeVine's announcement was met with love and support from his Stanford teammates.

Abrahm DeVine, a member of the U.S. men's national swimming team and the 2018 NCAA champion in the 400 individual medley, came out as gay in a recent interview with Swimming World magazine.

DeVine began his swimming career in the fall of 2015, when he first entered California's Stanford University. Before the end of that first year he had already beaten his times at the Pac-12 Championships, and already qualified for the NCAA Championships. He already qualified for the 400 Individual Medley A-final during that first NCAA championships -- soon after, he ranked ninth during the Olympic Trials preliminaries of the 400 IM.

His successes in the pool have only doubled since. In the two years since then, DeVine has made it to the World Championships and then to Pan Pacific Championships, coming in second in the 200 IM at Nationals.

Even during all of this success, DeVine still questioned himself and his abilities due to his sexuality.

"I'm a gay athlete," DeVine told Swimming World. "There aren't too many of us. So when I came out to my college team, that was a really tough time for me."

The lack of out athletes, especially among elite swimmers, has led to this atmosphere of negativity. "Growing up gay in any sport is definitely tough," DeVine said. "There's a culture that is created in a lot of sports where being gay is an insult. It's something that gets tossed around and makes you not want to go to practice or not want to hang out with the team or be a part of the team."

When DeVine did tell his teammates, he was met with love and support. DeVine said that, "just feeling my whole team wrap around me and feeling that love in a place where I hadn't really felt it, that was definitely pretty special for me..." He says the moment is one he will "never forget."

DeVine is now headed into his last year at Stanford, and his last year with his teammates. While he thinks its common for seniors to lose focus on swimming and start looking ahead, DeVine says he doesn't think that'll happen for him. "I want to finish my last short course season on a good note, and I think my whole class is on board with that too...I think we're all pumped and ready to go, ready to attack this year."

While he is finishing up this year at Stanford, DeVine still does have a chance to make it onto the Olympic 2020 team.

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