If you like to read and want a novel with a sports theme, check out one of these well-written, often-humorous YA books that deal with real-life issues (sports and other topics in parentheses):
Ball Don’t Lie by Matt de la Pena (basketball, being a foster kid and social outcast)
Black and White by Paul Volpe (basketball, friendship, racial tension)
Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock (football, girl playing)
Gym Candy by Carl Deuker (football, steroids)
Heart of a Champion by Carl Deuker (baseball, peer pressure, friendship)
Ironman by Chris Crutcher (triathlon, father-son relationships, training for the event)
Leverage by Joshua C. Cohen (football, gymnastics, bullying, friendship)
Open Ice by Pat Hughes (ice hockey, concussions, family dynamics)
Under the Baseball Moon by John H. Ritter (softball, dreams)
Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher (swimming, team bonding, adoption)
My favorites? I really enjoyed all of them, but if I had to choose . . .
1. Leverage was so intense, I couldn’t put it down.
2. Dairy Queen had me laughing out loud.
3. Open Ice deals with the very real possibility of suffering a career-ending injury.