Michael Sam is going to be a television star. Sam, the NFL’s first openly gay draftee, has inked a deal for a documentary or reality series with the Orpah Winfrey Network, according to several outlets.
Pro Football Talk called it a reality show. CBS Sports called it a documentary. Whatever the format, Sam, who made news in 2013 when he announced he was gay, and again earlier this month, when he was drafted by the St. Louis Rams, is definitely having his moment in the spotlight.
According to an Oprah Winfrey Network statement released Wednesday:
This special documentary series will feature a deeply personal, up-close look at the remarkable man at the center of this groundbreaking moment in professional sports, as the All-American defensive end and SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year enters the competitive world of professional football. Cameras will follow Sam as he works to earn his spot on the St. Louis Rams all while under the intense scrutiny of being the first openly gay player in the NFL.
That format is familiar to fans of sports documentary series like HBO’s “24/7’’ programs, which follows prizefighters as they prepare for big bouts. HBO also runs “Hard Knocks’’ which each season follows the training camp of an NFL team.