Michael Sam Hub

Gay Iconography: Michael Sam’s Historic Year


It’s been almost one year since Michael Sam became the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL. The historic moment, punctuated by a televised celebratory smooch with Sam’s now-fiancé Vito Cammisano, established Sam not only as an athlete on the rise, but an icon in the making.

From stadiums to sit-downs with Oprah, Sam’s impact has been felt on and off the field. The seventh of eight children, he persevered through tragedy. He lost two siblings, watching one die from a gunshot wound, while two of his other siblings are in prison. He became the first member of his family to attend college when he was offered a football scholarship from the University of Missouri. He came out to his coaches and teammates, but then came out publicly ahead of the NFL via The New York Times in 2014, creating a media storm around his opportunity to make history. Even First Lady Michelle Obama shared her excitement.

Even though a poll at the time said 86 percent of polled NFL players would welcome an openly gay teammate, Sam did face his fair share of backlash and criticism. He was drafted by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh round, making his professional debut in August of 2014, but was released from the team later that month. Just two days later, the Dallas Cowboys added Sam to their practice team, but they would waive him the following October.

Despite these setbacks, Sam has continued to be a magazine coverboy and media darling. See some of our favorite Michael Sam moments, AFTER THE JUMP

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Michael Sam Performed an Emotional #DWTS Rumba About His Dad Who Won't Accept Him: VIDEO


Michael Sam's emotional rumba with Peta last night on Dancing with the Stars left the NFL free agent in tears - because the dance, which was set to Kinky Boots ballad "Not My Father's Son", was about his father who refuses to accept him because he's gay.

Said Sam after the competition in an interview with Access Hollywood:

"I haven't talked to my father since February 2014. I said this in a previous interview. Time will heal all wounds, and I know eventually I probably can forgive my father and speak to him...I know that deep down he loves me. I just need to be patient."

Watch the performance, elimination, and interview, AFTER THE JUMP...



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Closeted Bisexual NFL Player Says Michael Sam 'Does Not Speak for All Gay Men'


Speaking anonymously with TMZ, a bisexual NFL player pushed back against comments made by Michael Sam after the openly gay athlete said in a recent interview that he respected the closeted football players who reached out to him, before adding that they didn't "have the same courage" to come out before staring their NFL journey like Sam did.

"As a bisexual man, I just feel like Michael Sam does not speak for all gay men," the player reportedly told TMZ Sports. "He has his own opinion ... but DON'T say that we don't have the courage to come out. It's totally wrong. Just speak for yourself. No one else."

The player added that he feels the NFL still isn't ready for openly gay or bisexual players but that Sam did get a fair chance in the league, he just didn't "perform well."

Michael Sam Says He's 'Confident' He'll Be Playing Football Somewhere This Year: VIDEO


Michael Sam says he's confident he'll be playing professional football somewhere this year — whether it's in the NFL or the Canadian Football League.

After a somewhat disappointing performance at the NFL's Veteran Combine on Sunday, Sam was swarmed by the media. 

ESPN reports:  

"As long as I still have that will, as long as I'm still healthy and can play this game, you will continue to see me fighting to get in this league," he said. ... 

"I am very confident that I will be playing football this year somewhere," Sam said. "So we'll leave that at that."

Sam was asked to clarify if the CFL was still an option. "If that's an opportunity, then I will take it," he said.

Cyd Zeigler at OutSports reports that no one asked Sam about being gay — which Zeigler says is a sign of progress. One reporter did ask about Sam's appearance on Dancing with the Stars — to which Sam replied, "Next question."

Sam's time in the 40-yard dash on Sunday was less-than-stellar, at 5.07 seconds, but he's never been known for his speed. 

Sam became the first openly gay player to appear in an NFL game last year, after he was drafted by the St. Louis Rams and before being cut. Sam later joined the Dallas Cowboys' practice squad before being cut again. 

Some have speculated that Sam — the former SEC co-defensive player of the year — isn't on an NFL team because he's gay. 

Hopefully, an NFL team will sign him again and give him another chance to prove himself in the preseason. 

But if not, or if he gets cut again, it sounds like Sam will be playing in the CFL. And if he becomes a star north of the border, questions about why he's not on an NFL team will become even more difficult for coaches and general managers to answer.  

Watch ESPN's report, AFTER THE JUMP ...

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Michael Sam's Bootylicious Debut on 'Dancing with the Stars' Has the Judges Raving About His Rear: VIDEO


Michael Sam made his dancing debut alongside Peta Murgatroyd on the season opener of Dancing with the Stars this week, and while the judges had some critiques of Sam's footwork, there was unanimous approval of his impressive behind.

"That butt was a work of art," raved judge Bruno Tonioli. "Michelangelo's 'David' has nothing on you."

Watch Sam's derrière sway to the groove of "Uptown Funk" AFTER THE JUMP...

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Michael Sam: I Put My Hand Above Vito's Butt 'and the Rest Was History' — VIDEO


NFL free agent and Dancing with the Stars contestant Michael Sam gave a fascinating and forthcoming talk last week at Quinnipiac University about a variety of topics, including his fiancé Vito Cammisano, speaking about how the couple met:

SamSam told the crowd (7:30 in clip AFTER THE JUMP) that he met Vito at a Playboy bunny party at the University of Missouri and their first meeting was not the greatest. Sam said that at the party he saw two students who were "hammered" on the patio of the house where the party was at and went to see if they were okay. The first one he spoke to was Vito, who snapped at him, and said, "Get the ef away from me....do you know who I am?"

Sam thought angrily to himself, "I don't care who the hell you are."

Sam didn't talk to Vito for two years after the exchange, and actively disliked him. But one night at a bar when friends were encouraging them to get along, Sam says he placed his hand above Vito's butt "and after that...the rest is history."

They later broke up, Vito graduated, and they got back together after Sam found himself comfortable to come out, and Vito helped get him there.

Sam added that he is now sometimes criticized for dating a white guy:

“My fiance gave me the strength [to come out]. The challenge I get now is, why are you not dating a gay black guy? Why are you dating a white guy? Why would I do that? Why would I leave someone I fell in love with and have been through so many challenges with.”

Sam also spoke about stereotypes, coming out, and other gay players in the NFL:

"I'm not the only in the NFL that is gay. I'm just the only one that is out."

He talked about Dancing with the Stars and the upcoming Veteran Combine:

“I thought I did enough in the preseason (last season), but apparently it wasn’t enough. I just have to work harder. I’m certain, whatever league I’m playing in, that I’m going to be playing football somewhere next year...I’ve fought adversity all my life. It helped me become me.”

Watch the full talk, AFTER THE JUMP...

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