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More lesbian-baiting charges against Penn State basketball coach

Is Coach Portland worried Sapphic desires might be catching?

I had a post up at my place back in October, Gay-baiting coach needs to zip it, about Penn State’s basketball coach Rene Portland‘s problem with lesbians, both real and imagined. Portland has a history of anti-gay recruiting methods and a well-known, infamous “no lesbians” policy on her team.

She repeatedly questioned Jennifer Harris, a 6 foot guard from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, about her sexual orientation, and threatened multiple times to kick her off the team if she found out Harris was a lesbian. Harris left the team, transferring to James Madison University after Portland finally told her to “find somewhere else to play.”

Now, two other women have come forward to accuse Portland of this sleazy behavior — note that Penn State added sexual orientation to the school’s non-discrimination policy in 1991, yet this behavior by the coach continued to the present day. (

Two more former players on Penn State’s women’s basketball team have come forward to accuse coach Rene Portland of making disparaging comments about lesbians.

Courtney Wicks, who played on the Lady Lions from 1996 – 1997, and Cindy Davies who played for Penn State in 1980, say that they also heard Portland make accusations about lesbians.

Davies who is a lesbian and Wicks who has a lesbian sister made the allegations on ESPN in a program looking into allegations made by former player Jennifer Harris. Harris, who is not gay, has filed suit with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission naming Portland, the university, and Athletic Director Tim Curley as defendants.

…On ESPN Wicks said that Portland’s dislike of lesbians was clear. “She made it seem like if you have lesbians on your team at some point it will get into your locker room,” said Wicks, who transferred from Penn State after a year and a half.

Cindy Davies, who acknowledges a lesbian affair with the team manager said she quit the team and the university after Portland confronted her with suspicions about the relationship and told her she would continue to investigat[e] if she proved the affair she would make the information public. Davies said that she became so depressed she considered committing suicide.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding