Openly gay American football player Michael Sam is on the cover of the December edition of GQ magazine as one of its ‘men of the year’.
The 24-year-old former college sports star made history when he came as gay in February, just before the professional football selection season.
His NFL career, however, has yet to take off. He was initially selected by the St. Louis Rams in May, but was not chosen for the final team. He then was given the opportunity to join the Dallas Cowboys practice squad but also failed to make that team.
While Sam remains without a team for now, the impact of his coming out in the traditionally homophobic and macho American football world has been huge.
The celebratory kiss he shared with his boyfriend Vito Cammisano on live television when he heard the news of his Rams selection led to a media frenzy and further broke down barriers.
He has been lauded by the likes of President Obama and has used numerous opportunities to speak out for LGBT equality and to share his experiences with the public.
There is now speculation that Sam may be recruited into the Arena Football League or the Canadian Football League.
GQ’s annual Men of the Year issue features six covers, each with a different celebrity. In addition to Sam, these include Chris Pratt, Dave Chappelle, Ansel Elgort, Shailene Woodley and Steve Carell.