By TOD PALMER
The Kansas City Star
Missouris Sigma Nu chapter left no doubt as to its feelings about former Tigers defensive end Michael Sam.
Sam, who announced Sunday on Twitter and in interviews with The New York Times and ESPN, that he is gay, is featured prominently in a flag that adorns the chapters house in Columbia.
The banner reads, "SIGMA NU STANDS WITH SAM #ONEMIZZOU."
"The whole environment here at Mizzou right now, everybodys showing support," chapter president and Rockhurst High School graduate Charlie Laird said. "Were proud of him and his announcement."
During the Sigma Nu chapters weekly meeting Monday, Deon Kinchelow, a junior biology major and pre-med student from Lees Summit, proposed the initial idea.
"I thought it would be a good idea to show our support for (Sam) because I feel most students here feel the same way," Kinchelow said in a press release from the fraternity. "I think the banner speaks to the way we support our Tigers in every endeavor."
Kinchelow and six fraternity brothers Zach Pierce, Joe Stuckenschneider, Ed Madison, Ken Jones, J.D. White and Ryan Greenway sketched, painted and hung the banner.
Laird said the response to Sigma Nus gesture has been overwhelmingly positive.
"Its kind of been blowing up on Twitter all day," Laird said. "In general, its been well-received and the alumni have loved it too."
Sam is the first openly gay prospect in NFL Draft history.
More photos of the banner are available at www.sigmanumu.com.