Michael Sam and his boyfriend are engaged. Now what?

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Michael Sam, the first openly gay man to be drafted by an NFL team, is engaged to college sweetheart Vito Cammisano. The pair made their intentions official during Sam’s 25th birthday trip to Italy, and posted some loving shots to Instagram along the way. What’s less clear, though, is what Sam intends to do, now that he’s without a football job.

Sam was picked in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams, which are something of his hometown team, considering that Sam played college football at the nearby University of Missouri. He had a pretty good preseason–and made headlines for some solid play on the field–but was cut by the Rams during training camp as the team was particularly deep at defensive end, Sam’s position. Shortly thereafter, the Dallas Cowboys signed Sam to their practice squad, where he played for several weeks before being cut again. Sam has been out of the NFL since October.


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Personally, though, Sam and Cammisano have been together since their college days, during which Sam would sneak into Cammisano’s apartment through a window in the middle of the night in order to keep their relationship a secret. Vito, who starred on Mizzou’s swim team, is also the son of mobsters: the New York Daily News reported this fall that the noted Cammisano crime family, which featured mobsters such as Willie “The Rat” and Gerlamo Cammisano, is in fact Vito’s own.

Allegedly, Willie–Vito’s grandfather–got his nickname because of his preferred method of corpse disposal. Said former mafia member Fred Bonadonna, at a trial in 1980, “I knew both from my father and others that Willie was called Willie the Rat because he killed people and stuck them in the sewers so the rats could eat them. He doesn’t like the name. I doubt that anybody ever called him that to his face.”

And Gerlamo (“Jerry,” to his friends and associates), Vito’s father, ran a gambling ring out of Kansas City and served 14 months in federal prison when he got caught.

No one’s accused V-Cam of any shady doins, though. He was known as a stand-up guy at Missouri, from which he graduated with a communications degree.

The couple is still on vacation, and haven’t announced wedding plans. Nor has Sam announced what he intends to do career-wise. His Oprah-produced reality show got some critical acclaim, and his late-December interview with Winfrey shed some new light on what it was like to come out so publicly. He’s said before that he fully intends to have a career in the NFL, and, as a free agent, he can try out with any team he wants. The 2013 SEC Defensive Player of the Year might have a football future. But, given how many closeted NFL players reached out to him after he was drafted, Sam also has the respect of millions as an advocate for gay rights.


(Photo credits: Michael Sam on Instagram)

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