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Michael Sam Holds First Press Conference, Says He Wants To Be Seen As 'Michael Sam The Football Player': Video

Missouri defensive end and NFL draft prospect Michael Sam held his very first press conference today since he publicly came out as gay. Some highlights are below.

On gay slurs in the locker room: “I’ve been in locker rooms where all kinds of slurs have been said. I don’t think anyone means it. It might be a little naïve and uneducated but as time goes on, everyone will adapt.”

Sam was also asked how he would feel about being drafted into the Miami Dolphins, this since the release of the Ted Wells report, an investigation which revealed extensive bullying within the team: "If the Miami Dolphins drafted me, I would be excited to be a part of that organization. I'm not afraid about going into that environment. I know how to handle myself, I know how to communicate with my teammates, I know how to communicate with coaches ... and whoever I need to communicate with." 

Addressing the type of questions he's been asked by the media recently: "'How's football going? 'How's training going?' I would love for you to ask me that question. But it is what it is and I just wish you guys would see me as Michael Sam the football player, not Michael Sam the gay football player.” 

When he was asked if he felt like a trailblazer, he echoed the same response: "I feel like I'm Michael Sam."

Watch a video of the press conference, AFTER THE JUMP.

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  1. No, Bill, I think it's smarter to let the teams know ahead of time and let the chips fall where they may. The team that chooses him knows EXACTLY who and what they are getting and will have time to put some plans in place. Plus most of the "OMG! He's FIRST!" drama will have a chance to die down before the season starts instead of causing problems later.

    Also, he wasn't particularly closeted in college, so the rumors would have been there even if he hadn't come out beforehand.

    Posted by: Cal | Feb 23, 2014 10:46:19 AM

  2. @MICKYFLIP - Everyone's story is different. I'm 66 years old, came out at 21 (1969) while in Viet Nam. I did not get kicked out of the military (hell, during Viet Nam nobody got kicked out). Being gay in 1969, before marriage and gay were even used in the same sentence, wasn't any picnic but I wasn't alone and I wasn't going to hide. During my working career I was college educated professional in a very competitive business and NOBODY ever pushed my "buttons" - EVER. Was I lucky? Of course I was but my point is that Michael Sam's story isn't your story or my story or anyone else's but his own. He is a smart young man who appears to know who he is and he, like everyone else who takes control of their identity, will experience life on his terms.

    Posted by: ThomT | Feb 23, 2014 2:29:22 PM

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