Michael Sam made history in becoming the first openly gay player drafted into the NFL. But he insists he does not stand alone.

Sam declined to estimate how many gay athletes play in the NFL, but he said Thursday that several players contacted him after the St. Louis Rams made him a seventh-round draft pick last year.

"I am not the only gay person in the NFL," Sam said. "I'm just saying there are a lot of us. I respect the players that did reach out to me and had the courage to tell me that they were also gay, but they do not have the same courage as I do to come out before I even played a down in the NFL.

"The players who have reached out to me and told me about their sexual orientation, it just means a lot. But I will never say anything about who they are, what teams they are on. I'm just saying there's some famous people, and I'm not the only one."

Panthers add tackle Martin

•The Charlotte Panthers claimed offensive lineman Jonathan Martin, the victim in the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal two years ago. He played last season for San Francisco. The Panthers also signed free-agent wide receiver Jarrett Boykin away from the Green Bay Packers. Boykin started 11 games in three seasons for the Packers.

•The Chicago Bears agreed to a one-year contract with former Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Alan Ball, who started seven games last season before being injured.

College basketball

Lavin, Tyndall exit suddenly

Coaches exited under peculiar circumstances Friday. St. Johns' fired Steve Lavin after his best season, and Tennessee fired Donnie Tyndall after his first season.

In announcing Tyndall's firing, athletic director Dave Hart cited an NCAA investigation still underway at Southern Mississippi, where Tyndall coached before taking the Tennessee job. Hart said Tyndall had acknowledged to him that he deleted e-mails that would have been of interest to the NCAA.

"Knowing what I know now, is that a mistake?" Hart asked about hiring Tyndall. "Probably."

Lavin's team went 21-12, the most victories in his five seasons at St. John's, but the team lost in the NCAA tournament's first round. St. John's qualified for the tournament in only his first and last seasons.


Walker takes Texas Open lead

Jimmy Walker, playing 35 minutes from his San Antonio home, shot a 5-under 67 in the Texas Open to take a one-stroke lead.

Walker overtook first-round leader Charley Hoffman with three straight birdies late in his round. Hoffman finished with a 72 that dropped him into a tie for second with Aaron Baddeley.

Pressel shares lead after record round

Morgan Pressel matched the course record with an 8-under 64 for a share of the second-round lead with Mirim Lee (69) in the LPGA Tour's Kia Classic in Carlsbad, Calif.

Colin Montgomerie and Joe Durant shared the lead at 5-under 67 after the first round of the Champions Tour's Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic in Saucier.


Hot Rod Hundley dies at 80

Hot Rod Hundley, the former NBA player who broadcast Jazz games in New Orleans and Utah for 35 years, died in Phoenix. He was 80.

Hundley broadcast 3,051 Jazz games from 1974 through 2009. He joined the franchise before its first season in New Orleans in 1974-75. Before that, he averaged 8.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists in six seasons with the Lakers in Minneapolis and Los Angeles, playing in the 1960 and 1961 All-Star games.

Auto racing

Logano on Martinsville pole

Daytona 500 champion Joey Logano won the pole for Sunday's Sprint Cup STP 500 race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. Logano turned a fast lap at 98.461 mph in the third round of qualifying, edging Ryan Newman for the pole.


Tennis: Amateur CiCi Bellis, a 15-year-old American, advanced to a potential third-round match against Serena Williams by beating Zarina Diyas 6-2, 6-1 in Key Biscayne, Fla.

Figure skating: Yuzuru Hanyu overcame a tumble on his opening quad toe loop to take the lead after the men's short program at the world championships in Shanghai. The Japanese skater scored 95.20 points, more than two points ahead of Javier Fernandez of Spain

College football: Archie Manning will take a leave of absence from the College Football Playoff selection committee to deal with a health issue related to a recent knee replacement.