Tamika Catchings Named To Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame

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    (Photo via Tennessee Athletics)

    Lady Vol legend Tamika Catchings has been named to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.

    Catchings was announced as part of the nine-member 2020 induction class on Saturday afternoon. The Tennessee women’s basketball legend is the second Lady Vol to be inducted to the hall. Catchings joins her head coach at Tennessee, the late Pat Summitt, who was the first and only other person associated with the Lady Vol program to be inducted. Catchings is the first-ever Lady Vol player to be inducted to the hall,

    Catchings joins Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, Eddie Sutton, Rudy Tomjanovich, Kim Mulkey, Barbara Stevens, and Patrick Baumann in the Class of 2020, which will be enshrined in Springfield, Massachusetts — the Birthplace of Basketball — on Saturday, August 29, 2020.

    Catchings played for the Lady Vols from 1997-2001 and is one of only two UT players to earn WBCA All-America accolades all four years of her career. She was also an SEC recipient on four different occasions and on the All-SEC First Team three different times.

    The Duncanville, Texas native played a key role on the Lady Vols team that went 39-0 and won an NCAA title in 1998. Catchings also helped the Lady Vols place second in 2000. During her four-year career on Rocky Top, she led Tennessee to four SEC regular season championships and three SEC tournament titles.

    Catchings remains fourth all-time in Lady Vol history in scoring with 2,113 points. She’s sixth with 1,004 career rebounds and is one of only two Lady Vol players to record 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds. Catchings ranks third in steals (311), fourth in career field goals made (760) and free throws made (471), and eighth in blocked shots (136). She also is tied for most games played in a season with 39.

    Following her time as a Lady Vol, Catchings played 15 seasons with the Indiana Fever in the WNBA. The 6-foot-1 forward was named the 2011 WNBA MVP and led the Fever to the 2012 WNBA Championship, earning Finals MVP honors. Catchings was a 10-time WNBA All-Star, a 12-time All-WNBA Team selection, a five-time WNBA Defensive Player of the Year, and the 2002 WNBA Rookie of the Year. She holds the league’s all-time career mark in steals

    Catchings won four consecutive Olympic gold medals with Team USA from 2002-2016. The four medals are tied for the most gold medals ever won in women’s basketball by an American. No Lady Vol has ever participated in the Olympics more than Catchings, and none have won more gold medals.

    She is now employed by the Fever. She serves as the Vice President and director of basketball operations for her former WNBA team.

    Catchings’ No. 24 jersey during her time as a Lady Vol hangs in the rafters of Thompson-Boling Arena.

    Ben McKee
    Ben McKee is a graduate from the University of Tennessee and has a degree in Journalism and Electronic Media. He grew up an Army brat and lived in Alabama for a bit, but he bleeds orange. He covers Tennessee football, basketball, baseball, and the Lady Vols for RTI, and he's also a co-host on the RTI Live Show and RTI Podcast. You can also hear Ben on the morning sports radio show "The Swain Event." He's the producer and co-host along with former Vol wide receiver Jayson Swain.