Michael Sam Faces Critics & Supporters As First Openly Gay NFL P - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

President Barack Obama sends his congratulations to Michael Sam,

Michael Sam Faces Critics & Supporters As First Openly Gay NFL Player

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Former Ole Miss Guard Critical Of Sam TV Coverage

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) - Former Mississippi basketball player Marshall Henderson says ESPN's coverage of Michael Sam becoming the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL was inappropriate and that he is boycotting SportsCenter.
    
Henderson took to Twitter Monday morning using expletives to say that he would not watch the show until the network stopped running the Sam footage, adding  ".... My brothers are 7 and 11 and saw that!!!."
    
The comment drew a quick and sharp rebuke from Ole Miss athletic director Ross Bjork, who responded on Twitter saying that he's "extremely disappointed & we do not condone the statements made by our former bball player. We believe in respect & dignity for all."
    
In addition to his long-range shooting, Henderson also was known for his brash and sometimes questionable behavior at Ole Miss.

Jones Fined After Sending Tweet About Michael Sam


MIAMI (AP) - Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones has been fined an undisclosed amount and will undergo educational training after sending a negative tweet about Michael Sam, the first openly gay player to be selected in the NFL draft.
   
Shortly after the St. Louis Rams took Sam in the seventh round Saturday, Jones tweeted "OMG" and "Horrible." The tweets were taken down a short time later.
   
On Sunday, Jones apologized for his comments and described them as inappropriate. The Dolphins said Jones has been excused from all team activities until he completes training related to his tweets.
   
The organization reacted swiftly to Jones' comments in the wake of the team's bullying scandal last year, which inspired a nationwide debate about workplace harassment.

Sam Finds Comfortable Landing Spot In St. Louis


NEW YORK (AP) - In St. Louis, Michael Sam might have found the perfect spot to pursue an NFL career and try to become the league's first openly gay player.
   
He'll have three former Missouri teammates with him on the Rams, including fellow draft pick E.J. Gaines.
   
Sam will be playing for a team with many fans that rooted for him when he was in college, and supported him when he publicly came out. And in coach Jeff Fisher, he'll be playing for someone who didn't shy away from being part of NFL history.
   
Howard Bragman, a public relations expert who has been working with Sam says Sam will face more pressure than the typical rookie. But he says he doesn't think there could have been a better situation than St. Louis.

Obama Congratulates First Openly Gay NFL Draftee
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama sends his congratulations to Michael Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team.
   
Obama calls the selection of Sam "an important step forward."
   
Obama says that from the playing field to the corporate boardroom, gay and lesbian Americans, quote, "prove every day that you should be judged by what you do and not who you are."
   
Sam was the Associated Press defensive player of the year in the Southeastern Conference. He was picked late Saturday in the third and final day of the NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams. Sam played college football at the University of Missouri and came out as openly gay in media interviews earlier this year.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

   

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