THE WEEK'S MOST READ STORIES: Michael Sam's announcement prompts reactions across sports community

Sunday, February 16, 2014 | 4:59 p.m. CST; updated 6:46 a.m. CST, Monday, February 17, 2014

COLUMBIA — Michael Sam's public announcement Sunday night that he is gay spurred reactions from a former Missouri diver, current and former professional athletes and a crane operator who snapped a viral photo at Memorial Stadium. If drafted, Sam could become the first publicly gay active NFL player.

Most of the links provided are to stories available only for Missourian digital subscribers.

Here are the 10 most popular stories posted last week on, according to Google Analytics:

  1. After former Missouri defensive end Michael Sam announced publicly he is gay,  sports editor Greg Bowers gave a behind-the-scenes account of the Missourian's reporting.  (5,817 page views)

  2. Former swim and diving team captain Greg DeStephen was the first openly gay Mizzou athlete. He said he faced a challenging moment when a teammate told the rest of the team about his sexual orientation without his permission. (4,548 page views)

  3. Michael Sam's announcement, which would make him the first openly gay active NFL player if drafted, drew comments from other gay athletes across sports. Former NFL player Wade Davis said he was "hyper-vigilant" during his time in the league. "I remember watching film of myself thinking like 'Wow, you’re running gay, you’re standing gay, you’re just being gay,'" Davis said. (2,844 page views)

  4. Michael Sam announced publicly that he was gay on Sunday night, but now faces two career-based challenges: the NFL Scouting Combine and NFL Draft. Sam could become the first openly gay active NFL player, if he is drafted.  (2,292 page views)

  5. As part of the weeklong Life Sciences & Society Symposium, Bill Nye will lecture at MU at 10 a.m. March 10 at Jesse Auditorium. The lecture is free and addresses the symposium's theme of "Decoding Science," including how scientists and the public can have better dialogue.  (2,007 page views)

  6. On Sunday night, former Missouri football player Michael Sam felt the time was right to publicly announce that he is gay. Sam's team had known since August, but Sam said he wanted to wait and tell his story how he wanted. "I wasn’t quite prepared," Sam said. "Later, I wanted to focus on my season, and I didn’t want that attention on myself at that time." (1,556 page views)

  7. Olympic 500m short track speed skater, and Missouri native, Emily Scott, did not advance from the quarterfinals Thursday in Sochi, Russia. Scott finished third in her heat, but also competes in the 1000m and 1500m events. (1,330 page views)

  8. Battle High School's Xavier Rolley, 17, and Samantha Moss, 16, have been dating since August 2013. While they consider themselves more different than similar, they both know they love each other. They do homework together and like to go to movies, laser tag and bowling for fun. (1,273 page views)

  9. Crane Operator Virgil Jeffery snapped a photo of the letters "S" and "A" carved into the snow in front of the rock "M" from 200 feet up at Memorial Stadium. The photo of the former Missouri football player's last name went viral as a showing of support for Sam, after he publicly announced he is gay. (1,220 page views)

  10. Emily Scott was the only American woman to advance to the quarterfinals in the Winter Olympics 500m short track speed skating event. Scott is a Missouri native who switched from inline to ice skating five years ago to compete at the Olympics.  (1,013 page views)

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