Former professional tennis player raises awareness about the reality behind college athletics
Jennifer Gabou is an accomplished former Division I student-athlete, professional tennis player and collegiate head coach who graduated from the University of Florida. As a student-athlete, she witnessed many experiences not commonly known about college athletics, including sex secrets, disease and pregnancy. Gabou’s father played basketball for the University of Kansas and then professionally for the Cleveland Cavaliers, which gave her mother a front seat to “the circus that can sometimes be college sports.”
Shining the spotlight behind the scenes
Because little has been written about the current integration of female student-athletes into collegiate athletics, Gabou decided to take the thoughts and stories that have been inside of her for 10 years and put them on paper.
Gabou published her book Division I to call attention to the underworld of student-athlete life. Division I gives the reader a young women’s inside perspective of the darkness behind the bright lights of major NCAA college athletics. Though a fiction book, it legitimately illustrates what life can be like for a student-athlete. Gabou wants NCAA sports fans to be aware of what has happened on and off the playing field in the process.
“There is a line on the back cover of the book that rings true for so many in today’s billion-dollar college industry,” Gabou concludes. “Any and everything is possible in a world where football is king, winning is supreme and all bow to the glory of sports.”
Jennifer Gabou explains why she chose to self-publish her book, Division I, with iUniverse.
Urging others to make a difference through her words
“I hope that people will think about what they do before they do it. And so that’s my main aim. And also to realize how difficult it can be to be a young woman at a large university facing all the issues that young women face today while balancing school and athletics.”
"I got a little tired of seeing the campfire effect of telling people my story, they looked mortified...so when I stopped coaching I thought, now would be a great time."
About the Book
When 18-year-old Ally Lancaster sets foot on the University of Eastern Florida campus as a freshman, she's unprepared for what being an NCAA Division I student-athlete truly means. Awarded a full tennis scholarship, she's thrust into a raw, secretive world where the price of success lasts longer than the glory.
“Jennifer Gabou is phenomenal in her depiction of being a Division I female athlete. This book isn't just for athletes to relate too, but for all of those who are curious as to what really happens after the wins and losses. I'm hooked!” Continue reading
“A VERY good read. I think all young people should read it whether they are a potential athlete or not. A real eye opener. Very well written.” Continue reading
“I read this book on my way to Sin City and could not put it down … I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in a glimpse of what challenges meet our college athletes on their path toward greatness.” Continue reading