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Ex-Missouri teammate: Michael Sam 'is not the same' anymore

By John Breech |

Eric Waters says he's no longer on speaking terms with ex-Missouri roommate Michael Sam. (USATSI)
Eric Waters says he's no longer on speaking terms with ex-Missouri roommate Michael Sam. (USATSI)

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If there's one person in the NFL who knows Michael Sam well, it's probably Steelers tight end Eric Waters. Not only were the two players teammates at Missouri, but they were also roommates.

The two players also used to be friends, but Waters says that's not so much the case anymore. The undrafted free agent, who signed with the Steelers in May, told the Pittsburgh Tribune that Sam 'has changed' and it might be because the Rams defensive end is more focused on fame.

"He is a nice guy, but I will say the truth: A little bit of him has changed," Waters said. "It is really not my situation to speculate at this point, but he is not the same Michael Sam anymore."

So what's different?

"Just the way he acts and carries himself," Waters said. "I was watching the NFL Network the other day and I think it was Marshall Faulk who said that he keeps referring to himself in the third person as Michael Sam this, Michael Sam that. That's not the same guy we knew back when we were living together. He is not the same fun-loving, joking guy that really didn't care about stuff like publicity."

Sam announced he was gay in February and then three months later became the first openly gay player to be selected in the NFL Draft. Sam has also been on the cover of several magazines and he even got to hang out with Oprah Winfrey, who almost produced a documentary with him.

Sam has been busy and according to Waters, the two don't talk anymore, "I don't know if that is because he is more focused on the fame and the opportunity he has now or whatever," Waters said.

Waters was a vocal supporter of Sam's when he came out. Waters even sent out a tweet that was critical of his former Missouri teammates in February.

The tight end also said he's never had a problem with Sam.

"Like I tell everybody else, I don't care about your sexual preference or if you are black or white or freaking purple," Waters said. "As long as you can play football, that's all that matters. We had a common denominator: We were brought to the same university because we had the ability to play football. That's all that matters."

If the two former teammates weren't on speaking terms before Waters made his comments, it's hard to imagine Sam reaching out to Waters now.

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