Iowa State Will Allow 25K Football Fans At Season Opener

Jack Trice Stadium at Iowa State (via CycloneAthletics/Instagram)

Iowa State has announced its football season opener against Louisiana in two weeks will be in front of live fans. The school has reportedly re-allocated the tickets in Jack Trice Stadium to accommodate 25,000 fans – roughly 41 percent of capacity.

This comes at a time when new coronavirus diagnoses have skyrocketed in the Hawkeye State.

The Washington Post has this:

According to The Washington Post’s state-by-state database, Iowa has seen a 92 percent increase in new coronavirus cases over the past week, the second-highest rise in the country behind South Dakota.

Iowa’s seven-day average of new coronavirus cases stands at 241 per 100,000 residents, the highest among the 50 U.S. states.

In Story County, home to Iowa State’s campus, the seven-day average of new cases per 100,000 residents is 777, nearly a fourfold increase from just a week ago and one of the highest rates in the nation for one county. On Aug. 14, that number hovered around only 50 new cases per 100,000 residents.

The school says face masks will be required and there will be no tailgating allowed at the stadium.

“I’ll have personally zero, zero tolerance for any fan that doesn’t comply,” said Iowa State Athletic Director Jamie Pollard. “I don’t care how much money they give this institution, if you want to be in the stadium, you’re going to have to comply with what we put together. If you don’t do it, we don’t want you here.”

According to USA Today, that 41 percent of capacity figure is the highest level announced by any school in the U.S.

Podcast: Sexual Battery In Football Locker Room; New Drug Approved For PrEP; Man Says He’s Gay Because iPhone

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

In this week’s podcast:

• Allegations of sexual battery have led to the cancellation of a California high school’s football season

• A federal judge has struck down Tampa Florida’s ban on so-called conversion therapy

• The FDA has approved a second drug to be prescribed for PrEP

• A Russian man is suing Apple for $15k because his iPhone made him gay?

• And a Tennessee teen honored as part of his school’s homecoming royalty, graciously accepted in a sequin gown

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report

High School Football Season Canceled After Allegations Of Locker Room Assault

A California high school has canceled the remainder of its football season amid allegations of sexual battery between players in a locker room altercation after a practice last week.

Gilroy High School officials say a majority of players have chosen not to finish the season as a result of the alleged assault and subsequent investigation.

Mercury News reports that the incident “involved four students that assaulted a fellow student after school.”

The student who was allegedly attacked went to school officials on September 26, and after an investigation, juvenile citations for sexual battery were issued to four students.

“We investigated the allegations and determined there was evidence to support a criminal complaint.,” said Gilroy police Capt. Joseph Deras. “The aggravating circumstance was the number of suspects involved, and the use of force or fear played a role in our arresting decision.”

Deras added that the investigator’s reports have been forwarded to the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office for review to determine if the students will face prosecution.

Because all of the individuals involved are minors, few details – including the names of the students – have been revealed.

Police say there is currently no evidence that the alleged assault was a “hate-motivated crime.”

The local CBS News affiliate KPIX reports that some students say they’d heard “several players were ‘roughhousing’ with one teammate and may have taken it too far.”

KPIX adds that the remaining football season was forfeited because “only nine players remain on the team after others quit in protest.”

Watching these and other news reports, the Gilroy High School students are apparently divided over the issue.

In some interviews, there are students that seem to blame the alleged victim for the scandal…?

Here’s an earlier report from KBCW:

(lead photo via Depositphotos)

Air Force Football Player Receives Standing Ovation Coming Out To Teammates

Air Force football player Bradley Kim

Air Force football player Bradley Kim took a big step out of the closet this week and says its as much for other young people as it is for himself.

“The biggest reason I want to share this is to be able to reach people who are in similar situations struggling with the same things I have struggled with,” he told Outsports this week. “I want to be that example for kids that you can be gay, you can pursue your dreams, and you can have an athletic career.

“My dreams got me to a D1 football program. I want to be there for people who don’t feel like they have anyone there for them, because I was that kid growing up in high school.”

And so it was that on Friday morning, Kim shared his coming out on Instagram, beginning with a Bible verse and that “God made me this way for a reason:”

While he had quietly told a few teammates over the past year, before sharing with the world, the Air Force Falcons safety came out to the other defensive backs on the team.

The reaction? A standing ovation. According to Outsports, the entire team, including head coach Troy Calhoun, had a reaction of full-fledged support.

“They tell me they appreciate the fact that I felt confident enough, and they meant enough, for me to tell them,” he said.

It was that unwavering support that steeled Kim as he posted his message on Instagram.

‘’I’ve spent too many years worrying what other people will think and letting it affect what I do in my daily life. And I’m kind of done with that. It doesn’t affect my ability to play football. It doesn’t affect my ability to serve my country. No one cares here. We all go through the same thing, we all go through basic training. What we go through going through the Academy goes way deeper than worrying about what someone will think.”

(h/t Outsports)

Washington: State Lawmakers Propose Bringing Guns Into Sports Stadiums

Because, what could possibly go wrong?

From The Guardian:

Conservative legislators in Washington state have proposed a bill that would allow fans to bring guns into stadiums. The bill was proposed by Republican representatives Matt Shea, David Taylor and Bob McCaslin and would prevent stadium operators from stopping members of the public with licenses to carry concealed firearms from entering their venues with weapons.

Stadiums affected would include the Seattle Mariners’ Safeco Field and CenturyLink Field, the home of the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks and MLS’s Seattle Sounders. The Sounders won their first MLS title on Saturday night with victory over Toronto FC.

On Sunday, the NFL told the Washington Post it would oppose the bill. “We haven’t seen the proposed legislation but we have a policy forbidding carrying a weapon into NFL stadiums,” Brian McCarthy, the NFL’s vice president of communications, said in a statement.

Although US sports do not have the same reputation for violence as some of the more dangerous parts of European and South American soccer, there would be obvious concerns about allow firearms into venues with alcohol and where passions can ignite.

News Round-Up: September 21, 2016

Finding Prince Charming‘s Robert Sepulveda Jr.

Some news stories you may have missed:

Finding Prince Charming bachelor Robert Sepulveda Jr. warns he will SUE you if you shame him, call him out or just plain be mean to him on social media.

• The school district in McKinney, Texas, is about to get a $70 million high school football stadium. Everything in Texas IS bigger!

• The man who violently smashed a wooden chair over the heads of a gay couple after a fight at Dallas BBQ in NYC has been sentenced to 9 years in prison.

• President George H.W. Bush has told those in his close circle he plans to vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton in this year’s presidential election.

• OUT Magazine is catching hell for “profiling” right-wing nut-job and professional asshole Milo Yiannopoulos.

• Charlotte, North Carolina, erupts in racial tension as another black man is shot dead by police.

• Homeowners in Seattle are now being sued for $1.6 million in fines and damages for cutting down more than 150 trees on public property to improve the view from their homes.

• On the 4th anniversary of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney releasing his tax returns last election cycle, Hillary Clinton hits Donald Trump with this little valentine.

Out Football Player Michael Sam Leaves The Montreal Alouettes

“The last 12 months have been very difficult for me, to the point where I became concerned with my mental health. Because of this I am going to step away from the game at this time. I thank the Alouettes for this opportunity and hope to be back on the field soon. Thank you all for your understanding and support.”

A week ago Sam was prepping for his debut with the Montreal Alouettes.

Now, it appears he’s left the team.

From Outsports:

Sam’s time in Montreal has been a roller coaster. After much fanfare about his signing, he left the team for personal reasons the day before his first preseason game in June. When he returned to the team it was revealed that he had ended his relationship with his then-fiancé. In July he allegedly struggled to get into football shape, and reports claimed dissension on the team due to “preferential treatment” of the openly gay player.

He appeared in his team’s game at Ottawa last week but did not record a sack or tackle in limited action. Last night he was not present for his team’s game against the Edmonton Eskimos, either on the roster or in the stadium.

It is worth noting the incredible pressures put on Sam.

Before he came out a year and a half ago, before the NFL draft, he was expected to be a 3rd round draft pick based on his senior year play and being named SEC Defensive Player of the Year. Within hours of coming out, football websites saw his potential draft pick possibilities drop to maybe 5th or 6th round.

In the end, he was picked #249 in the 7th round.

Months later, it was revealed Sam never intended to come out in such a public fashion. He told the press his intention was to quietly come out to whatever team picked him up. That was how he handled coming out at Mizzou, and all went well.

But the press was apparently about to out him, and he felt he needed to control the story rather than let it unwind on it’s own.  I’d have done the same thing.

I think from there things spiraled, and it became a “one foot in front of the other” situation. Survive.

All Sam wanted to do was play football. A sport that gave him solace and strength in a difficult childhood.

Truly heartbreaking. I certainly wish Sam well.

Michael Sam Returns To Montreal Alouettes

Michael Sam has returned to the Montreal Alouettes two weeks after leaving the team for what he said were “personal reasons.” Sam left Montreal June 12, the day before the Alouettes’ first Canadian Football League preseason game, and allegedly boarded a plane headed for Dallas. At the time, speculation was rampant about whether Sam was leaving the team for good or if he would return.

From the Montreal Gazette:

As for Sam, he was in Montreal on Wednesday with injured linebacker Kyries Hebert and has a locker at Olympic Stadium. He’s expected at team meetings this Sunday and at practice the following day.

Earlier this week Alouettes general manager Jim Popp offered The Guardian his perspective on why Sam left the team:

“I think he needed a break,” Popp said. “That’s my personal belief. I think it was just overwhelming to some degree, and he needs to clear his mind, clear his head. Do I think he wants to play? Do I think he wants to be on the field? Do I think he wants to be Michael Sam the football player? I, 100%, believe that. Yes.”

(from Outsports)

Out Footballer Michael Sam Absent From Montreal Alouettes Opening Exhibition Game

Michael Sam, out football player who signed with the Montreal Alouettes in late May, is not with his team today for his team’s exhibition opener against the Ottawa Redblacks.

From ESPN:

“The Montreal Alouettes organization would like to clarify the situation surrounding international defensive end Michael Sam,” the team said in a statement. “Friday morning, Michael asked the team a special permission to leave training camp and return home for personal reasons.

“The Montreal Alouettes fully respect Michael Sam’s decision and rally around him to offer him all time and support needed. The team has left the door open and Michael is welcome to come back whenever he feels ready.”

Named the 2013 SEC defensive player of the year for Missouri, Sam came out before the 2014 NFL draft, and was eventually picked by the St. Louis Rams late in the 7th round.

The Rams released him after the 2014 preseason, and the Dallas Cowboys picked him up for their practice squad. He lasted several weeks but was eventually released.

Sportscaster Rick Moffat tweeted he ran into Sam at the Montreal airport. From Sam’s luggage load, Moffat didn’t think Sam was leaving for good. See below.