Jamie Kuntz kicked off NoDak college football team after kissing boyfriend during game

Categories: GLBT, Sports
jamie kuntz.jpg
Kuntz was in the closet until the boyfriend-kissing controversy.
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Jamie Kuntz, an 18-year-old linebacker from Dickinson, North Dakota, was kicked off the North Dakota College of Science's football team after he was spotted kissing his 65-year-old boyfriend during a game.

Coach Chuck Parsons ostensibly booted him for a violation of team rules, but Kuntz believes his sexuality played a role in Parsons' decision.

"I don't know if [Parsons is] homophobic," Kuntz told Yahoo. "I can't tell in his heart, but what happened, in my experience, I was getting cheated."

Kuntz's story was first reported by Dan Savage, who provides details about NDSCS' roadtrip to Pueblo, Colorado, for a game over Labor Day weekend:
Kuntz had a concussion and wasn't supposed to go to Pueblo but at the last minute Kuntz was tapped to film the game. Kuntz's boyfriend, who lives in Denver, met Kuntz in Pueblo and sat with him in the otherwise deserted press box while Kuntz filmed the game.

"We were getting destroyed," says Kuntz, "the game was a total blowout. And I guess I got bored and so I kissed my boyfriend and some of my teammates saw us."

After the game--just before a 15-hour bus ride back to North Dakota--NDSCS's head football coach, Chuck Parsons, pulled Kuntz off the bus and confronted him. Kuntz denied kissing the man with him in the press box [he initially told the coach the man was his grandfather] and he denied being gay. Kuntz was on Twitter for most of the bus ride back to Wapheton. He sent some tweets that alarmed his roommate--Kuntz hinted at being suicidal--and the police were called. After the police determined that he was not a suicide risk, Kuntz sent his coach a text message saying that he was gay and that he had kissed the man who was with him in the press box. Kuntz also apologized to his coach for lying.
The next day, Kuntz was called into a meeting with Parsons and dismissed from the team. Yahoo provides some details:
Parsons gave Kuntz a letter outlining the reasons for his dismissal and cited the school's player's manual. In the letter, he wrote: "Your actions on the evening of 9/1/2012, while representing NDSCS and the NDSCS football program, reflected poorly on the program. Your decisions and conduct on the night in question clearly fall into the "Conduct deemed detrimental to the team" category. Your actions/conduct during the game was a distraction to your teammates who were looking to the press box as the game was being played. This decision was arrived at solely on the basis of your conduct during the football game and because you chose not to be truthful with me when I confronted you about whom else was in the box with you. Any conduct by any member of the program that would cause such a distraction during a game would warrant the same consequences."
Kuntz, an All-Region player during his senior year in high school last year, left NDSCS after his meeting with Parsons and is hoping to transfer to a D-1 school. The University of Minnesota is reportedly one of the schools that showed interest in him coming out of high school, so a move to gay-friendly Minneapolis is a possibility.

Since getting kicked off the team, Kuntz has received an outpouring of support, including hang-in-there tweets from the NFL's two most prominent gay rights advocates, Vikings punter Chris Kluwe and Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo. But as Savage notes, the age difference between Kuntz and his boyfriend complicates Kuntz's story, especially in a post-Sandusky world.

Savage writes:
I'm angry too. Impulsively making out with your boyfriend in a press box isn't the best way for a gay college athlete to come out to his teammates. But Kuntz's impulsiveness--or Kuntz's recklessness--is understandable. He is a teenager. It's hard to feel anything but anger for Kuntz's boyfriend. The elder man's reckless disregard for his Kuntz's future, to say nothing of Kuntz's physical safety, is much harder to excuse.
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16 comments
stronnes
stronnes

hahahaha   his name is Kuntz

CinBlueland
CinBlueland topcommenter

Ok, 65 yo BF. I don't care if you're gay or straight.. That's just ick.

Kyle J. Holman
Kyle J. Holman

When a 65 year old is with an 18 year old it kind of makes you wonder if there was some sort of statutory rape going on. The same questions would be being asked if his partner were a female.

Jeremy Hop
Jeremy Hop

How can anyone deny with a straight face say if this were a girl he was kissing this would be moot? Pun intended

Melissa Peterson
Melissa Peterson

Kissing your boyfriend/girlfriend has never been allowed during a game at least in my school. And he LIED to his coach. That's the bigger point.

Tyler Chip Moody Suter
Tyler Chip Moody Suter

Why, Grant? Does making out take away from the game? I do have to agree with Ryan, though. What is a 65 year old doing with an 18 year old? Creepy.

Libby Summers Boucher
Libby Summers Boucher

My concern is more that a 65 year old would think dating an 18 year old was okay.

Grant Hobgood
Grant Hobgood

Sorry, but PDA shouldn't be allowed on the field what-so-ever. He can be gay all he wants...but I don't want to see anyone making out with someone during a football game. Sorry.

Ryan Adams
Ryan Adams

Sexuality aside...really 18 year old with a 65 year old? wtf!

Anne C. Welch
Anne C. Welch

@ breanna: no, he was booted off for "violation of team rules" which occured immediately following his "outing" his lying is understandable although wrong. This is bullshit.

Jeff Chase
Jeff Chase

This is ridiculous. He wouldn't have been kicked off the team if it was a girl. And who cares if his boyfriend is older? That is no reason to kick someone off the football team. This is his own business!

Paige Benda
Paige Benda

thank you so much for doing a blog on this!!!

Paige Benda
Paige Benda

Who gives a flying f*ck if he lied about being gay??? He shouldn't have been asked about his sexual orientation in the first place! He hadn't even told his mom yet!!! Who the h*ll wouldn't lie about being gay in Wahpeton, North Dakota!! btw - I love you Aaron Rupar!!!

Breanna Dwyer
Breanna Dwyer

Wasnt his boyfriend 65 years old and the reason he was kicked off the team was because he lied about who he was with?

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