Follow on Twitter

Follow UltiWhirled on Twitter: @ulti_whirled

Friday, June 14, 2013

Trey Katzenbach Comes Out as First Openly Old Player in MLU History

Trey Katzenbach is the captain and leader of Major League Ultimate’s Philadelphia Spinners.  He has been an NCAA basketball player, a doctor, and a father.  But today is special.  Today, he becomes the first MLU player in history to publicly come out as old. 

“I’m an ultimate player, I’m 42 years old, and I’m proud of it,” said Katzenbach in a landmark interview with Ultiwhirled, confirming long-standing rumors in the ultimate community. 
Katzenbach in action, captured by

Katzenbach’s announcement comes on the heels of the Rainmakers’ Elliot Trotter’s groundbreaking interview with OutSports, in which Trotter became the first MLU player to publicly come out as gay. 

After reading the OutSports piece, Katzenbach was inspired to make his own announcement. 

“It’s something I’ve known about myself for a long time, frankly,” said Katzenbach.  “And it just seems silly to hide it.  I’m not ashamed, and I think it’s healthy to just get everything out in the open.” 

Katzenbach hasn’t always identified as old; he says it’s something he has come to grips with gradually as he has matured.

“Honestly, I’m not quite sure when I first figured it out.  It’s not like you just wake up one day and decide to be old, or one day you’re old and you weren’t before.  But I think being old has been a part of me for a while.  Sure, I guess tried to hide it at first, but I’ve been open with my family about my age for years now.” 

Importantly, Katzenbach says he has also been open with his teammates and coaches throughout his entire professional ultimate career. 

“Oh, everyone involved within the Spinners organization has been totally supportive.  You know, there’s one or two jokes here or there, like: Trey, what was it like before they invented cleats? Or maybe: Trey, did Grover Cleveland have a good flick huck?  But it’s all good-spirited.” 

“They know that regardless of what year I was born…I’m going to go out there on the field and give it everything I have, and that’s all that anyone cares about.”

“Even if I did finish college before [teammate] Jonah [Wisch] was born.”  

In coming out today, Katzenbach wants to “give hope” to other players out there who are old, or who think they might be old. 

“I want to be a role model for them, so that they know that no matter who they love, or what decade they fell in love during, they can still keep playing and still achieve their dreams.” 

Though Katzenbach is the first MLU player to publicly admit to being old, statistics suggest that at least a few other old players are likely playing in the league right now.  Rumors have circulated for years about the DC Current’s Keven Moldenhauer, who has never commented publicly on the subject. 

Katzenbach admits that he knows of other old MLU players, but says it’s not his place to comment one way or another, and that those players will speak up “when they feel ready.” 

Until then, gentlemen, keep laying out.

(Just don’t break a hip, because MLU’s insurance isn’t that good.)