Skip to main content

NFL Draft prospect Michael Sam says he's gay in ESPN interview

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

In what was described as a "landmark moment in American sports history" in an interview with ESPN, Missouri defensive end and SEC defensive player of the year Michael Sam came out to the world as gay Sunday.

"I am Michael Sam, I'm a college graduate, I'm African-American, and Im gay," Sam said to the network at the tail end of his interview.

Sam is listed as a top-10 defensive end prospect on some NFL draft boards, and should he be drafted, would become the first openly gay NFL-draftee, and subsequently the first openly gay player in NFL history.

NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper. Jr said shortly after the announcement that Sam is like a "third-to-fifth" round pick.

The first-team All-American said he told his teammates in August that he was gay, and said the tone of the room was "OK, finally Michael told us he is gay", adding that the feeling of acceptance he received was "amazing".

When asked why he was the right person to be in the spotlight for this issue Sam simply responded "because I'm not afraid of who I am."

Reaction has been extremely positive in the immediate aftermath of the interview, including former Viking Robert Smith tweeting his support.

Sam tweeted his thanks for the support shortly after the interview aired.

Next Up

Nero

The Raptor Center's ambassador, Nero the turkey vulture, dies at 47

Nero helped save the California condors before taking up his post as an education ambassador.

Ben Leber

Ben Leber named new permanent co-host of 'Twin Cities Live'

The former Minnesota Vikings linebacker was introduced Friday afternoon.

MPR

APM Reports, maker of 'In the Dark' podcast, nixed by Minnesota Public Radio

MPR said "select programming elements" of APM Reports will be incorporated into MPR News.

storm, severe

The latest on holiday weekend severe weather chances for MN

The most significant severe threats are Sunday night and again on Monday.

Arianna Vos

Charges: Driver was drunk, high in head-on crash that killed 19-year-old woman

The young woman killed in the crash was a college student studying zoology.

motorcycle

Motorcyclist killed in Ham Lake after passing in the turn lane

The motorcyclist was hit by a car turning onto the road.

Keith Ellison

Minnesota gets cut of Ford settlement over misleading ads

The $19.2 million settlement centers on Ford's C-Max hybrid and Super Duty pickup truck.

Richfield High School

Richfield High School closed for day after threat

District officials say the threat is not believed to be credible.

Related