Michael Sam said he came out publicly a year ago since he didn't want to have to hide the fact that he had a boyfriend, Vito Cammisano, to whom he is now engaged.
"It was because of love, the reason why I came out," Sam told about 220 people Sunday at the Human Rights Campaign's second annual Kansas City Equality Brunch, held at the Roasterie cafe.
Sam, still hoping to play in the NFL, had been out to his University of Missouri teammate during his senior season in 2013. But he decided to come out to the world last February, feeling he did not want to have to lie about his personal life from any media inquiries.
Sam told the HRC gathering that he is not sure why has not been offered a chance to compete for a job with any of the 32 NFL teams. He was cut by the St. Louis Rams after the preseason and by the Dallas Cowboys from their practice squad in midseason. But he said has no regrets, relaying one story about a suicidal young woman who decided to keep living, inspired by his example.
NFL teams are extending invitations to players to participate in their offseason activities and training camp, and Sam has yet to get any offers. He has applied to be selected to participate in the first veterans combine in March.