“Man makes plans and God laughs” – a quote that Sable Lee has found to be true of her own life. If you had told Lee as a young girl that she would grow up to be the Assistant Director of Student-Athlete Development at Clemson University, she would not have believed you.
Growing up in Oviedo, Florida, Lee found her passion for sports early on. At first, sports was a way for her to make friends and connect with her neighbors, but when she reached high school, she found herself playing four sports. Out of those four sports, her passion lied in basketball, however she fell in love with softball as she played her way into a scholarship at Jacksonville University. Her playing tenure exposed how few black women were in the sport. Prior to 2012, only about 7-8% of softball players were black.
Being one of the only black women on her softball team motivated her to aim higher and thrust herself into an even smaller demographic – being a black softball coach. Following her graduation at Jacksonville University, Lee spent a season at Marshall University in 2018 where she was the assistant coach for the Thundering Herd softball team.
Off the field, Lee received her Master’s in Business of Administration and Sports Business from the University of Central Florida, DeVos Sports Business Management Program. After graduating from the DeVos program, Lee found herself jobless. This experience, while frustrating for most, became a humbling experience for her that would eventually lead her to Texas Tech University Athletics.
It was at Texas Tech where Lee’s mindset switched from coaching to administration. As she started her career in student-athlete welfare and development, she realized the impact she could have working with student-athletes personably and the advice she could give as a black woman.
With a passion to help student-athletes to be the best versions of themselves, she puts an emphasis on black women within sports. For Lee, being a black woman in sports is more than a title, but a steppingstone for all the young women who are trailing behind her and a testament to all the women who came before her. Lee is living proof that even though life may get you down, you can always find ways to get up.
She encourages young black women to make authentic connections in their field and be prepared for anything. While she emphasizes being prepared, she also encourages young women to embrace the unknown and instructs them to, “let your journey be what it’s meant to be.”
by Kennedy Collins, Journalism Major, University of Central Florida