When Division I college football player Michael Sam came out this weekend, it was inevitable, in this day and age, that he would be met with both praise from progressive fans and athletes and hate from homophobic critics. However, one critic just learned the hard way that blasting an openly gay celebrity online is a major no-no.
After Sam came out publicly, Kent State university wrestler Sam Wheeler used a slew of anti-gay slurs on Twitter to blast the openly gay NFL hopeful. Shortly after the tweets were posted, Wheeler deleted them and his account was deactivated. However, a screenshot of the tweets spread around the Web, thanks to Outrage DC.
News of Wheeler’s homophobic rant quickly got national attention and KSU Director of Athletics Joel Nielsen soon released a statement about the controversy.
“We are aware of the insensitive tweets by one of our student athletes. On behalf of Kent State University, we consider these comments to be ignorant and not indicative of the beliefs held by our university community as a whole. This is an educational opportunity for all of our student-athletes.” wrote Nielsen.
Jim Andrassy, KSU’s wrestling coach, revealed that Wheeler had been suspended from the team for his homophobic tweets.
“As an alum of Kent State University and as Sam’s head coach, I was surprised and offended by what I read on Twitter. I have spoken to Sam personally, and while he is remorseful, he will be suspended indefinitely while we determine the best course of action moving forward,” wrote Andrassy.
Well, kudos to KSU for dealing with the matter so swiftly. Hopefully, the school also helps Wheeler to learn why his actions were inappropriate and uncalled for. Furthermore, we hope other athletes who might want to say anything homophobic about Sam, as well as other LGBT athletes, will think twice about their words and actions.
Check out some other homophobic athletes after the cut. –nicholas robinson