banner

College Football

more stats

Former Missouri standout Sam comes out

Columbia, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - Reigning SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year and former Missouri standout defensive end Michael Sam announced that he is gay in an ESPN "Outside the Lines" interview on Sunday.

In the interview, Sam stated that he revealed his sexual orientation to his teammates and coaches at Missouri in August of 2013.

Sam is considered a prospect for the upcoming NFL Draft and should he be selected, could become the NFL's first openly gay player. He is projected by most scouting services to be taken in the middle rounds.

His decision to publicly announce his sexual orientation stemmed from his participation in the Senior Bowl two weeks ago, where Sam said he learned that many were already aware that he was gay.

"Coaches just wanted to know a little about ourselves, our majors, where we're from, and something that no one knows about you," Sam said in the interview. "And I used that opportunity just to tell them that I was gay. And their reaction was like, 'Michael Sam finally told us.' "

At the conclusion of the 2012-13 NBA season, 12-year veteran Jason Collins announced he was gay in a Sports Illustrated article. MLS player Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay professional athlete to play in a game in the U.S. when he appeared in an MLS game in May of last year.

"We admire Michael Sam's honesty and courage," said the NFL in a statement. "Michael is a football player. Any player with ability and determination can succeed in the NFL. We look forward to welcoming and supporting Michael Sam in 2014."

Division III Willamette University kicker Conner Mertens became the first active college football player to announce he was gay when he came out last month.

02/09 21:35:43 ET

Other Stories

  • US Open Tennis: Mixed Double Championship & Women’s Singles Semi-Finals

    Friday at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • US Open Tennis: Men’s Singles Semi-Finals

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Cleveland at Pittsburgh

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • US Open Tennis: Women’s Championship

    Sunday at 4:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Carolina Hurricanes Fan Town Hall

    Tomorrow at 11:30 am on 99.9 The Fan

  • Dave Doeren Show

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • MiLB Playoffs: Bulls at Columbus

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 620am

Scoreboard
MLB
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
BOS
7:05pm Tonight
BAL
CIN
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
DET
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
NYM
7:10pm Tonight
ATL
PHI
7:10pm Tonight
TAM
TOR
8:05pm Tonight
CHC
MIL
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
CWS
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
ANA
8:10pm Tonight
KAN
TEX
8:15pm Tonight
STL
PIT
8:40pm Tonight
COL
SFG
10:05pm Tonight
OAK
SEA
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
ARI
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
WAS