Sam-I-Am, Football Player

All-American defensive lineman for the Missouri Tigers, Michael Sam has come out as gay man that plays football. Sam is slated as a top draft pick and some say he should have waited until he was actually drafted before announcing his sexual orientation. Some folks believe that he may have hurt his chances of being drafted by his admission. There are several things I don’t understand about this and maybe it’s my naievte.

Why should this admission hinder his chances of being drafted? If he is a good football player and would be an assest to an NFL team then that’s the only thing that should matter, right?

There are approximately 2.5M gay males in the U.S.; there are 32 NFL teams and 53 players per team, which means there are 1,696 men playing professional football, so it stands to reason that there a few gay men already playing. I know it’s been reported that he will be the first openly gay player, but again why should it hinder him being drafted? I understand that American football is tradtionally seen as a ‘manly’ sport, but I still don’t understand the brouhaha behind Sam’s announcement.

Apprantly Sam is a really talented player — after all he was voted All-American — so why should and why does his sexual preference/orientation preceede and overshadow his talent?

Is it Michael Sam, football player or Michael Sam gay football player?

I vote for Michael Sam, football player; but I can hear it now, “You know Michael Sam, the gay football player?”

What are your thoughts on this? Should this be a big deal? Or are we making something out of nothing? Do you think the number of people that care outweigh the number of people that don’t care about him being a football player that’s gay?

5 thoughts on “Sam-I-Am, Football Player

  1. I agree. I do not think that his sexual orientation should have anything to do with whether or not he is or is not selected.

    He should be selected based on the merit of his game, and nothing else. (unless of course there have been recent amendments to a football code that states all players HAVE to be heterosexual) Highly unlikely that business….

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  2. I agree completely. If he is worthy, then his candor should have no bearing. He has shown himself to be a talented and dedicated player. A person must be true to himself, and waiting till after the draft will not facilitate him being true to himself. Hooray for him, and I wish him so much success and may be be oh so inspired. I’m glad to see him receive such community support. It reminds me of some of the old stories I have read of the fair skinned black folk who passed for being white. Even Lena Horne was among them, but who eventually gave up the charade and stopped being afraid of the black ball. If you have the talent, nothing else should matter – not race, not gender, not sexual orientation, or any other personal attribute.
    If Michael Sam can do the job, hold his own on the football field, then that’s the only thing that matters.

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    • You’re absolutely right. Not trying to be preachy, but when will really start accepting people for who they are — you know the content of their character. And the burden of secrets can affect one’s performance, so by all means let him be him.

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