US: College wrestler suspended indefinitely over homophobic tweets about gay footballer Michael Sam
A college wrestler in Ohio has been suspended indefinitely for making anti-gay comments about NFL hopeful Michael Sam.
Sam Wheeler, a 20-year-old redshirt sophomore, tweeted on Monday that “I can’t even watch Sports Center today cause all they are talking about is Marcus Smart or that fag from Mizzou.”
He called one user “queer,” before tweeting, “O geez I got all these fag boys mad at me now.”
Outrage DC managed to take a screen capture of the comments before Wheeler deleted his Twitter account.
“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,” Kent State athletic director Joel Nielsen said. “This is an educational opportunity for all of our student-athletes.”
University officials also released an accompanying statement from Wheeler’s wrestling coach, Jim Andrassy.
“As an alum of Kent State University and as Sam’s head coach, I was surprised and offended by what I read on Twitter,” said Mr Andrassy. “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.”
An end date has reportedly not been set for Wheeler’s suspension.
Despite receiving praise from US First Lady Michelle Obama, sports figures, LGBT campaigners and politicians, on Wednesday it was revealed that Michael Sam’s own father had expressed displeasure over his son’s decision to speak publicly about his sexuality.
However, former Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said Michael Sam has “taught a lot of people here first-hand that it doesn’t matter what your background is, or your personal orientation, we’re all on the same team and we all support each other”.