Skylar Diggins has dominated the basketball world for years. And now she is looking to do the same in the book world.
Fans have seen Diggins rise from a high school standout to a college star, and now she’s one of the faces of the WNBA. She plays for the Dallas Wings, a team that used to be called the Tulsa Shock before moving this season. She was a first-team All-WNBA selection in 2014, then had to have knee surgery after just nine games last year. She missed a few games early this season, but is now back on track.
But in her new book, she focuses on the years that came before her fame — middle school.
In The Middle School Rules of Skylar Diggins, you get to know how good she was on the court and what she was like off it. The book is co-written by Sean Jensen, who also has done two other books in this series, both with NFL Pro Bowl players (Brian Urlacher and Charles Tillman). Jensen’s son liked reading about guys, but his daughter inspired him to write about a female athlete.
Despite the title, Diggins writes about her life from when she gets her first basketball hoop at 3 years old to her final game in college at Notre Dame, which is in the same town (South Bend, Indiana) where she grew up.
The book is half-text, half-illustrations, with the pages mixing words and pictures. Diggins is proud to say that the pictures are drawn by her fiancé, Daniel Smith, a former Notre Dame football player.
In the middle of each chapter, there is a rule. These rules are life lessons that Skylar’s family would tell her. For example: “You can be friends with anyone no matter what they look like or what their past is. Don't pre-judge others.”
Check out the video above for my interview with Diggins and Jensen, then watch the clip below for more about Diggins’ career on the court and her hopes for playing in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.