One day after news broke that a former 49er has been charged with beating up his boyfriend, current 49er Chris Culliver said that gays wouldn't be welcome in the team's locker room.
Shock jock Artie Lange interviewed Culliver, the team's No. 3 cornerback, during Tuesday's Media Day Tuesday and asked him about gay players. Lange played the brief interview on his radio show Tuesday night.
"I don't do the gay guys, man," said Culliver. "I don't do that. No, we don't got no gay people on the team, they gotta get up out of here if they do. Can't be with that sweet stuff. Nah...can't be...in the locker room man. Nah."
Culliver said that any player who is gay should keep that a secret. "Yeah, come out 10 years later after that," he said.
Homosexuality and football became topical this week after former 49ers first-round pick Kwame Harris, an offensive tackle, appeared in court on charges he beat up an ex-boyfriend. Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo, meanwhile, has made waves over his vocal support for same-sex unions, although he steered clear of the topic Tuesday.
"Actually, I talked about that so I don't want to keep touching on that subject, but obviously we're here at the Super Bowl, and it's the pinnacle of sports here in the United States so I just really want to focus," he said. "A lot of media stuff has come up with Ayanbadejo this and Ayanbadejo that but I think the most important thing is that I'm here with my team. My focus is on this football game and this is the most important game I've ever played in my life ."
Earlier this year, the 49ers became the first NFL team to record an "It Gets Better" public service announcement, which denounced anti-gay bullying.
Safety Donte Whitner appeared in the piece and was asked about Ayanbadejo's stance on Wednesday. "I think he's an extremely strong guy to be able to do it," Whitner said. "You know there's going to be a lot of backlash. You know there's going to be a lot of people questioning why he's doing it. But I think it's great. I think it's great for people to be who they want to be."
Culliver isn't the first 49er to say that gays aren't welcome in the team's locker room. In 2002 running back Garrison Hearst made inflammatory comments after Esera Tuaolo came out of the closet. "Aww, hell no! I don't want any f-----s on my team," he told The Fresno Bee. "I know this might not be what people want to hear, but that's a punk. I don't want any f----s in this locker room."
Hearst later apologized.
Long-time trainer Lindsy McLean publicly revealed he was gay upon his retirement in 2004. McLean's sexual orientation was an open secret at the 49ers facility. He has said he mostly was treated with respect during more than two decades as the team's top trainer, but he also has spoken about incidents of taunting and harassment by players.