Sports : Michael Sam Honored At The ESPY Awards



Yesterday, Michael Sam, first openly gay NFL football player, was honored with Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2014 ESPY Awards. Not only reserved to athletes, this award recognizes people in the sport industry who have broken down barriers.

Michael Sam received this award from the hand of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, after being greeted with a standing ovation. The NFL player delivered an emotional speech and couldn’t hold his tears when he said :

“The way I see it, my responsibility at this moment in history is to stand up for everybody out there who wants nothing more than to be themselves openly. Recently, a friend asked me to talk to his sister, a young woman who was considering killing herself rather than accepting and sharing with her loved ones the fact that she’s gay. When we spoke, she told me she would never consider hurting herself and that somehow my example helped her. It’s amazing to think that, by just doing what we can, we can all touch, change and even save lives.”

Watch the very emotional video below and maybe grab tissue paper before you press play!

Congrats Michael! We are all proud of you!


There are 26 comments

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  1. Thom

    Very emotional speech. He was almost hampered in his message by his understandable emotions. It made me proud to have lived long enough to see this day and this event.

  2. Tommy Davis

    Who cares , because he is black and gay people are going crazy , it’s a double standard , when Tim Tebow would drop to his knees and pray people would ridicule him , its all just ridiculous .. Guys will still be homophobic in the locker room with Micheal Sam – it’s just reality

  3. Tim

    Not to tell someone else how to live their lives… But… I feel like he needs to complete at least one year in the nfl before taking these victory laps. Sort of like when Barry got the Nobel prize before even taking office…

  4. DezyRavioli

    He’s so true to the gay stereotype it’s ridiculous. So sensitive and yet I still can’t help but respect the man.

  5. Lovetobreed

    I give Michael credit for standing up and being himself in a male dominated, testosterone fueled sport. This award is very deserving to a young man who will definitely be known as a trail blazer. I hope others follow in his footsteps, this way freedom and equality can be had by one and all.

  6. Bruno2006

    What a great and beautiful speech! Thanks you for sharing your story and insights. I look forward to watching your professional career unfold.

  7. Stan

    Thank you to those of you who made positive comments about a young man who has the courage to be who he is and be proud about it! I am sorry for those of you that see no merit for what he has already accomplished by just coming out as a gay football player! He has more pride and courage than most of us will ever have the chance to show the world if we continue to critcize those who take a stand! Thank you Michael Sam for being You!

  8. Jayindabay24

    Wait. So he’s gay. He’s black. He plays football. That’s why we care? What about the guy who lost both his legs fighting for the country…? Why don’t we talk about shit that actually matters these days? Whether or not this guy is gay or not, he’s still going to get his million dollar contract and live a comfortable life. Meanwhile. People are still starving, dying. And that’s just in America….. PRIORITIES PROPLE!

  9. king

    You don’t have to give a f$#k…just be MAN enough to respect him and the road some of us are not MAN enough to travel. He earned those tears!!!

  10. IMO

    Good speech… he seems like a jock with brains. And I think it’s great that Michael is willing to speak out and be a role model.

    @Tommy Davis: Stop being weird.

  11. Del

    Mr. Sam is neither the first openly gay college football player nor will he be the first openly gay NFL player. There were players before him who suffered and paved the way so he could enjoy this day. ESPY Awards got it wrong. This is more hype than substance. This is like going to a gay parade and denying “Stonewall” ever happened.

    Regarding Mr. Tebow, many athletes have prayed on the field on one knee without the made for Hollywood narcissistic crap. Tebow was ridiculed because he didn’t live up to the hype. Mr. Sam may be ridiculed if he has a short-lived NFL career and doesn’t live up to the hype. Keep in mind, most players in the NFL don’t care about this stuff; the media will seek out the few “antis” to keep the hype fueled.

  12. Hunter0500

    We’ll have made real progress when we get to that day when a football player can be gay, the media doesn’t make it “news!” and social movement interests don’t make him a poster child for their cause.

  13. Reggie

    That was a powerful and moving message, an inspiration to all the young people out there struggling to come out to their friends and family. One thing the need to realize, I went through that same fear and anxiety. I asked my sisters about whether I should tell my mom. My sister told me mom always knew. So youngsters be proud and don’t be afraid, your family will always be there for you. Good luck Michael in your career. I think you will go far in life and the NFL.

  14. Frankie_wills

    Congrats to MICHEAL SAM! Idk how anyone could keep their emotions in check w/ everything he’s gone thru to get to where he is today. The season is less than one month, I can’t wait to see how his athleticism will translate on the pro level field! Now, that’s what I’m looking forward too! Enuff with award shows, let’s play some football! Lol

  15. MYFL

    Michael Sam deserves to be honored for his contributions to the cause of LGBT freedom! His speech was quite emotional, but that is something to be expected of any young person who is going through so much in such a short period of time! I wish Mr. Sam all the best in his NFL career and in life! It seems he will be a champion on an off the field!

  16. Ernest Holloway

    Im nit sorry to say this but what the F##k has he done? Big F deal. Everyone praiseing him for what? He a gay football player big deal. Talk to me if he wins a superbowl and named MVP then I will care. Some may call me a hater and yes I am one. This is why this is why we are so hated as a group. Im gay and I get tried of it. Damn can we just move on really. He is not a story intil playoffs. He should keep his mouth shut stop f crying and play the damn game.

  17. Crybabyboobie

    I saw it in a noisy sportsbar and the volume was off. I had no idea what this big black guy was blubbing about.

  18. LoveWhiteGuys

    I love Michael Adam. A n active white athlete would never have the courage and confidence to come out. Way to go MS!!

  19. iplayedbefore

    To all who had a negative comment on this you clearly have either never played football or competed at a high level of it before. Just to get to where he did and not play takes so freaking much. Culture of the sport aside just to survive being on a team is ridiculous. Having a dream being chased by guys just as brutal huge determined literally starving, yeah starving giving up every last waking second of your life for an hour of every week under the lights and that’s if you start, for that matter even dress for a game. For a f**cking maybe. Go live that life first then talk smack. I’ve seen grown ass straight men cry for hours over a loss, a bad combine showing, an injured friend who can take the journey anymore. Shut up you bunch of tv watchers you dont know jack. You take all that pressure mental and physical hardship then you take in too account he’s gay too in an environment run by old straight country white dudes no matter what part of the country youre in, where pgysically and sexually harassing “the gay kid” might even help you get to play. its like a freaking way of life for some players. im ashamed to say i stood by with my bi ass and watch it happen just for my shot… And i didnt get as far as him.This dude is a legend no matter what. He deserves all the recognition he can get

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