Towering at 6-foot-7, Puerto Rican Gabi Garcia Fernandez doesn’t just turn heads with his height, but also because of his skill set and talent on the BYU volleyball court. Gabi is nationally recognized for his top-spin serve and deadly opposite spike that rightly proclaimed him the 2020 MPSF Player of the Year, as well as the 2020 NCAA Player of the Year. Although this senior originally planned to attend college in California, when BYU offered him a spot (and full-time scholarship), Gabi quickly decided to rise and shout. He has his sights set on the 2021 national championship as one of the leaders of the Cougars.

Rickety Ride “Understanding the importance of academics used to be a big challenge for me. I wasn’t that great in school, and I focused more on sports. I realized my goal wasn’t just to go pro, but to graduate, too.”

Merry-Go-Round Moment “The Hawaii game last year! I don’t remember it very well, so I would like to relive it.”

Top of the Ferris Wheel “This year, one of the BYU freshman players wanted to know how I achieved everything I did last year. I hadn’t processed what receiving my awards really meant. I realized I was responsible for being an example to others on the court. That was a huge moment for me.”

Theme Park “Because of my mom, my siblings and I are Harry Potter freaks. I like to watch movies and I feel like I’m actually living them when I’m at Universal Studios.”

Grand Prize “I couldn’t live without new shoes. I am always buying new shoes.”

Gem of the Utah Valley Jamboree “I golf all around Utah County with my coaches and teammates.”

Firework Finish “My goal is to go professional and travel the world. One day I could be in Russia, the next day in Brazil. I want to play my sport, travel, and experience different cultures and various ways of playing the game.”

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