Michael Sam (Hulu)

Must-see morning clip: Top NFL prospect Michael Sam comes out

"I'm Michael Sam. I'm a football player, and I'm gay," the SEC defensive player of the year announced Sunday


Katie McDonough
February 10, 2014 6:48PM (UTC)

Michael Sam, a defensive end for the University of Missouri, the 2013 SEC Defensive Player of the Year and a top prospect for the May NFL draft, announced he is gay in a Sunday interview with the New York Times.

If Sam is drafted, he will be the first openly gay player in the NFL, a league plagued by a culture of homophobia and hypermasculinity. In an interview with the Times, he acknowledged the historic nature of his announcement, but framed it mostly in personal terms. "I'm coming out because I want to own my truth," he said. “I’m not naive. I know this is a huge deal and I know how important this is. But my role as of right now is to train for the combine and play in the NFL."

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Sam came out to his Missouri teammates last year, and said he was embraced by his teammates; he's optimistic the same will be true if he's drafted.

"I may be the first, but I won't be the last," he went on to explain. "I think only good things are going to come from this."

Watch the interview here:


Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at kmcdonough@salon.com.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Football Gay Rights Homophobia Lgbt Rights Lgbtq Lgbtq Awareness Michael Sam Nfl Video

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