SPORTS & RECREATION

My Life on the Line: How the NFL Damn Near Killed Me, and Ended Up Saving My Life

Edge of Sports. Sept. 2019. 288p. ISBN 9781617757587. $28.95; pap. ISBN 9781617757594. $15.95; ebk. ISBN 9781617757709. SPORTS
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From his conservative upbringing to a career in the NFL, O’Callaghan appeared to be a success story. Under the surface, though, he struggled with his sexuality. The burden of that secret, plus the physical toll of playing football, led to opioid addiction and suicidal ideation. O’Callaghan’s willingness to address the realities of his life, along with his uninhibited writing style, help to balance a story, coauthored with sports commentator Zeigler that could have ended tragically. His powerful memoir will inspire and even provoke change, and serve as a building block toward acceptance and empathy beyond NFL locker rooms.

VERDICT This no-holds-barred account reveals O’Callaghan’s long journey to recovery and self-acceptance, and provides hope for anyone, not only professional athletes, living life in the shadows. Recommended for all sports fans and readers interested in social, cultural, and LGBTQ history.

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