LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Michael Sam, the first openly gay man drafted by an NFL team, has become engaged to the man he kissed on television after he was chosen last year by the St. Louis Rams, he said on social media on Friday.
Sam, who is no longer with a team in the National Football League, posted a photo of himself on Facebook kneeling before his boyfriend Vito Cammisano and presenting him with a ring. The two were vacationing in Europe at the time.
“Thank you for making my 25th birthday a very special one,” Sam wrote on the Facebook post. The athlete also said on Twitter on Friday, “Thank you for saying yes.”
Sam’s birthday was on Jan. 7.
He disclosed his engagement on the same day the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to decide whether states can ban gay marriage, delving into a contentious social issue that will be one of the most anticipated rulings of 2015.
Fourteen U.S. states have bans against gay marriage, while many other states have seen similar bans struck down by judges.
Sam was the Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year as a senior at the University of Missouri before graduating in December 2013.
The following February, before the NFL Draft, he announced he was gay. In May he was picked up by the St. Louis Rams in a late round of the draft, and immediately celebrated by kissing Cammisano during the televised event.
The Rams cut Sam in August. He was immediately picked up by the Dallas Cowboys practice team, only to be cut in October.
Last month, he told Oprah Winfrey in a television interview that he still dreams of playing in a regular season game.
Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Curtis Skinner and Paul Tait