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For gay athletes, it's getting better

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- College athletics is gradually becoming more inclusive for gay students. But if athletes are ever able to participate openly without fear of discrimination, it will require coaches and administrators to foster a holistically welcoming environment, from initial meetings with recruits to the halftime pep talks in the locker room.

"If" is the operative word.

On Saturday, here at the annual meeting of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's College Sport Research Institute, a panel of gay athletes, administrators and researchers agreed that this progress is imminent. But they differed on how quickly it can happen.

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