NEW YORK, N.Y. – January 18, 2022 – Today, Kaepernick Publishing is proud to announce that it will be publishing former NBA star Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf’s autobiography on October 18, 2022. Written with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nick Chiles, In the Blink of an Eye: An Autobiography will capture the attention of sports fans and general audiences alike.
Marked by staggering vulnerability, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf—whose given name was Chris Jackson before converting to Islam and changing it in 1991—recounts the twists, turns, trials, and triumphs of his life. He is perhaps most well-known for being exiled from the NBA for praying—instead of standing and saluting the flag during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before games throughout the 1995–96 season. Abdul-Rauf’s protest sent shockwaves through the league that can still be felt today.
With wit and candor, Abdul-Rauf tells the story of how he rose to the top of his game—only to have his career taken away in the blink of an eye when he stood up for his principles. He also recounts his experiences living with Tourette syndrome, committing his life to the Islamic faith, and growing up estranged from his father. Through evocative passages that place the reader in the heat of the moment as well as poignant portraits of the important people in his life, In the Blink of an Eye: An Autobiography will capture the attention of readers from all walks of life. This book is a must-read for anyone who has faced down adversity by standing up for the integrity of their own life, path, and identity.
“I’m deeply honored to work in collaboration with Kaepernick Publishing,” said Mahmoud Abdul Rauf. “The timing couldn’t be more important than it is now for us to join forces in controlling our own narratives with the hope that my story, among many more, will continue to inspire future generations.”
Colin Kaepernick, founder of Kaepernick Publishing, remarked, “We at Kaepernick Publishing are humbled to bring Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf’s powerful story to life. Stories like Mahmoud’s are rarely given the respect and prominence they deserve by mainstream media, and we are here to change this. Our goal at Kaepernick Publishing is to amplify the courageous work of people like Mahmoud and to provide a platform for inspirational voices to tell their stories with truth, authenticity, and integrity.”
ABOUT MAHMOUD ABDUL-RAUF
Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf (born Chris Jackson) is a world-renowned professional basketball player who grew up in Gulfport, Mississippi. He first caught the nation’s attention in 1988 as a Louisiana State University (LSU) freshman sensation. That year he averaged 30.2 points per game, an NCAA record that stands to this day. In 1990, he entered the NBA after his sophomore season and was drafted 3rd overall by the Denver Nuggets. In 1991, he converted to Islam and took the same Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf. By the 1995–1996 season, Abdul-Rauf was unmatched on the court, scoring 51 against the seemingly unbreakable Utah Jazz, 32 on Michael Jordan, and leading his team in both points and assists. It was shortly before this time that Abdul-Rauf decided he would no longer stand for the “The Star Spangled Banner,” viewing the American flag as a symbol of oppression and racism. The NBA temporarily suspended Abdul-Rauf, and soon he was traded to the Sacramento Kings, where he was kept on the bench much of the time. After his contract expired, he found himself shunned by every NBA team, effectively forced out of the league. Today, Abdul-Rauf plays in the BIG3 basketball league where he was named co-captain of his team and led them to consecutive playoff and semi-finals games. He continues to participate in many speaking engagements around the world encouraging people to stand up for their principles.
Nick Chiles is a bestselling author and an award-winning journalist. He is the author or co-author of 20 books, including three New York Times bestsellers he wrote with R&B icon Bobby Brown, civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton and gospel legend Kirk Franklin. He is the co-author with Academy Award-winning actor Jamie Foxx of his parenting memoir, Act Like You Got Some Sense. With Atlanta attorney Robbin Shipp he wrote Justice While Black: Helping African-American Families Navigate and Survive the Criminal Justice System, which was a finalist for a 2015 NAACP Image Award. Chiles served as a newspaper reporter, magazine writer, and magazine and website editor-in-chief during more than three decades in journalism, winning nearly 20 major awards—including a 1992 Pulitzer Prize as part of a New York Newsday team. He also worked as a literary agent with the Manhattan-based Aevitas Creative Management. He has served as a professor at Columbia Journalism School and at Princeton University and is currently a journalism professor at the University of Georgia. Chiles earned a bachelor's degree from Yale and an MFA from the University of Georgia.
ABOUT KAEPERNICK PUBLISHING, LLC:
Kaepernick Publishing, LLC, was founded in 2019 to elevate a new generation of writers with diverse views and voices through the creation of powerful titles that can build a better and more just world. See www.kaepernickpublishing.com for more information.