The first University Spotlight for 2021: and we have chosen another great university with another great Slamstox athlete! This week, we’re taking a look at Austin Peay State University in Tennessee. There we find Karlijn Schouten, now a second-year student athlete.

Karlijn strengthens the university’s athletics team as a pole vaulter, and she is working hard for her degree in finance. In January 2020 she became Field Athlete of the Week and in the same year ‘Indoor Pole Vault Champion’. Go Karlijn!

In the Netherlands, Karlijn also achieved great success: in the summer of 2019 she became Dutch champion pole vaulting with a PR of 3.85! It was time to continue her school and athletics career in the USA. What does she have to say about that so far?

“Sports and studying in the USA is really great. I learned many new things about myself that I would never have learned in the Netherlands.”

Karlijn Schouten – Student-Athlete

Are you curious about the Karlijn’s University? Keep reading!

The Campus

APSU is located in Clarksville, Tennessee, on the right of the center of the US. Clarksville, with a population of nearly 160,000, is in the top 5 of largest cities in the state. Clarksville is nicknamed ‘Tennessee’s Top Spot’. The university is an important part of the city.

APSU was founded in 1927 and is a ‘Public University’ with about 11,000 students. APSU’s name comes from Austin Peay, Governor of Tennessee at the time the university was founded. It is therefore not without reason that the sports teams are called the ‘Governors’! You can see part of the beautiful university in the picture below.

The campus has built up a number of typical traditions since its existence, below you can read more about a number of them:

  • The ‘All State’ student newspaper. Since 1930 (!) the source of information for all students, teachers and alumni of the university. Every Wednesday an update is published with the latest news about the university and the Governors.
  • The ‘MudBowl’. Every fall, students form teams to compete for the tournament title! There is volleyball and other fun games in the mud: a dirty but cool party…. You see this form of ‘fun sports’ more often at American universities. The annual event, which has been taking place since 2003, attracts more visitors every year.
  • GHOST, also known as ‘Greater Halloween Options for Safe Trick or Treating’. A long tradition in which APSU students and teachers dress up, hand out sweets and play games with children from the area.
  • ‘Plant the Campus Red’. An event that has been held since 1999, in that year the university was hit by a tornado that destroyed part of the campus. Students, teachers, alumni and fans from the area are bringing the campus back to life by planting hundreds of flowers, shrubs and trees. After the first edition in 1999, the school thought it was such a great initiative that it has been done every spring since then. How cool!
  • Miss Austin Peay and Miss Queen City. This event was founded in 1959 where actually a ‘scholarship competition’ is held among female students. Talent, interview skills, self-confidence and presence on the podium are the most important aspects of the election. An alternative way to receive a scholarship!

Many different buildings can be found on campus. Many buildings, like the university itself, are named after (former) governors. Beside the school buildings, there are also many beautiful sports facilities. Below we show a number of them

  • Fortera Stadium. This is the largest stadium in the university with more than 12,000 seats! Several competitions are held, including competitions of the track & field team of which Karlijn is part, how cool!
  • Raymond C. Hand Park. That is where the baseball games are held. There is room for almost 800 spectators. You can see a picture of the facility below!
  • Winfield Dunn Center, another large stadium on campus. It is the place where mainly basketball matches, but also volleyball matches, are held. There is room for almost 7500 fans in the stands!

There is way more cool stuff at APSU! Would you like to see more? Check out this virtual tour!


You have probably noticed that the sports teams of APSU are called the ‘Governors’. The women’s teams were previously called the ‘Lady Govs’, but now both the men’s and women’s teams are referred to by the same name. The pictures before probably showed you already what the university colors are … Just like every other university in the USA, APSU also has its own colors, during the matches the stands with fans color completely red and white!

The Governors participate in the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) within the NCAA Division 1. The Governors mascot is, yes, The Governor! You can see him in the picture below.

In total, APSU has 6 men’s teams: a baseball, basketball, cross country, American Football, golf and tennis team. The female teams are with a bigger number, there are 9 in total. The women also play (beach) volleyball, soccer and athletics.

The Governors have some cool lyrics for the Fight Song, which you can see below. Smash Bang, Biff Bam! Can you sing it along, Karlijn? 😉

Smash! Bang! To Victory
Go the Governors of Austin Peay
Clash! Clang! It’s Misery
For the minions of the Enemy
Fight On and
Smash! Bang! To Score again
For it’s ready, set 1, 2, 3!
Smash Bang! Biff Bam! Clash Clang! Rim Ram!
Dash Along to Victory
Let’s go Peay!

Want to know more about The Governors? Check out the athletic website!


Like most other universities, a lot of different things are offered at APSU in terms of study. The university does everything it can to help and support every student academically as well as possible. But what sets them apart from the rest? We have listed a number of quick facts! Did you know that…

  • The average GPA among first year students is very high at 3.25?
  • The average composite ACT score for incoming students is 21.5?
  • Students who have achieved an average GPA of 3.65 or higher are being honored?

This shows that APSU does its best to get the best out of its students academically.

Curious about all majors and courses offered at APSU? Check out here!

Do you, just like Karlijn, want to become student-athlete in the USA? Or do you want more information about your possibilities? Reach out!