Out football player Michael Sam has been dealt another setback in his career: just a day before his first exhibition match with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League, the team announched he was on his way back to the U.S.
Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by the National Football League, recently signed with the Alouettes for a two-year deal after being cut from the St. Louis Rams and Dallas Cowboys. But something suddenly made Sam walk away from Montreal. After Sam's agent said he missed Thursday practice because of a migraine, the Alouettes released a statement on Friday.
"The Montreal Alouettes organization would like to clarify the situation surrounding international defensive end Michael Sam. Friday morning, Michael asked the team for special permission to leave training camp and return home for personal reasons.
Out of respect for Michael Sam, the nature of this decision will remain confidential.
The Montreal Alouettes fully respect Michael Sam's decision and we rally around him to offer all the support needed. The team has left the door open and Michael is welcome to come back whenever he feels ready.
The organization will have no further comment on this matter at this time."
Head coach Tom Higgins told the Montreal Gazette he was surprised about Sam's departure, and reports indicate a family emergency may be bringing Sam back to his home in Texas.