Life Without Basketball

Life Without Basketball

A film by Jon Mercer and Tim O’Donnell

Life Without Basketball follows Bilqis, a young woman who explores her faith and identify as a Muslim American when a controversial ruling prevents her from playing basketball.

As a record-breaking high school star and NCAA Division 1 athlete, Bilqis’s life as a basketball player followed a clear path. At the end of senior year in college, she pursued her goal to play professionally, attended an invitational combine in 2014, was scouted favorably, and began contract negotiations with an agency in Switzerland. At that point she was informed that FIBA, the international governing body for the sport, had a rule banning headscarves on court.

FIBA initially explained that the rule was in place to keep the game religiously neutral. Later, FIBA cited safety concerns. Bilqis plans to meet with the FIBA board in Geneva at the end of 2017.


Bilqis has been invited to play for a diaspora team from Somali at this year’s All Arab Games in Dubai in February of 2018.


How To Donate

All donations for the production and distribution of Life Without Basketball are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

If you would like to make a donation online, please click here:

For More Information

For more information, you can contact Laura Healy, Program Administrator at Auburn at:

Phone: 212-870-3155 or 212-662-4315
E-mail: [email protected]

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