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Sam I am; NFL should welcome Sam with open arms - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Sam I am; NFL should welcome Sam with open arms

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Columbia, MO -

Missouri All-American Michael Sam says he is gay, and the defensive end could become the first openly homosexual player in the NFL.

In interviews with ESPN, The New York Times and Outsports, Sam says he came out to his teammates and coaches at Missouri in August.

Sam says: "I am an openly, proud gay man."

The 255-pound Sam participated in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., last month after leading the SEC in sacks (11.5) and tackles for loss (19), and he is projected to be a mid-round NFL draft pick.

He says: "It's a big deal. No one has done this before. And it's kind of a nervous process, but I know what I want to be ... I want to be a football player in the NFL."

In an interview with KTBS 3 Sports, Sam said he owes everything to the University of Missouri.

 

Missouri coach Gary Pinkel says Michael Sam revealed he was gay at one of the football team's get-acquainted dinners last summer.

Pinkel left the next move up to the senior who blossomed into one of the best defensive ends in the country -- and one surrounded by teammates who didn't worry one bit about sexual orientation or reveal his secret until he came out on Sunday.

Pinkel, athletic director Mike Alden and other school officials applauded Sam's courage Monday at Faurot Field.  Pinkel says he hopes Sam's decision will not hurt him in the NFL draft, and said no teams have contacted him. Sam has been projected as a mid-level draft pick.

Sam told KTBS 3 Sports one quarterback he looks forward to meeting in the backfield is Peyton Manning.  Sam says he has always admired Manning and, if he gets the chance to sack the Broncos quarterback, he would help him up and thank him for all he's done.

There are undoubtedly many players who are thanking Sam.

 

 

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