Senior Staff Writer
Michael Sam, a college football standout turned NFL draftee, quickly turned into a household name when a came out of the closet. He was the first openly gay athlete to be drafted to the NFL, a choice that has been the victim of much criticism and acceptance. His stock in the draft actually fell, mostly because he came out as gay, and many teams did not want “deal” with the baggage that came with Michael.
However, thankfully the St. Louis Rams not only picked Sam, but they also welcomed him to their family with open arms.
Well, fast forward a few months, and legendary head Coach Tony Dungy is saying, “I wouldn't have taken him. Not because I don't believe Michael Sam should have a chance to play, but I wouldn't want to deal with all of it. It's not going to be totally smooth ... things will happen."
While most people will grab ahold of Coach Dungy for saying he wouldn’t draft Michael Sam, the context in what he’s saying has some truth. Michael Sam is an incredible football player, but that’s not what people are going to focus on. He will forever be the gay football player, which is quite unfortunate for an SEC Defensive Player of the Year. It is almost guaranteed that for the first couple of years, he will be asked more questions about his sexuality, and how the guys treat him in the locker room than how his game is going.
I look forward to a time when people and athletes will not be judged for who they are, but for how good an athlete they are. How do you feel about Tony Dungy’s comments? Football and Michael Sam fans, let us know what you think!
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