Catchings Named One of Top 10 All-Time Athletes by USA Today High School Sports

FeverBasketball.com Staff | January 15, 2014

Indiana Fever forward Tamika Catchings ranked in the top 10 in the all-time top 30 American Family Insurance ALL-USA athletes, according to a Jan. 10 report by USA Today.

In honor of 30 years of the ALL-USA award, USA TODAY High School Sports recently counted down its all-time top 30 American Family Insurance ALL-USA athletes across all sports. According to reports, those selected "were named ALL-USA in high school and continued their strong athletic careers to the professional or Olympic level."

Catchings ranked ninth overall, just ahead of former NFL linebacker Derrick Brooks and just behind sprinter Allyson Felix. Catchings was the third-highest female athlete on the list, behind only Felix and WNBA legend Lisa Leslie, who ranked fifth.

Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith ranked first overall, followed by Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, Miami Heat forward LeBron James, and Leslie. Rounding out the top 10 were Hall of Fame running back Thurman Thomas, former NFL wide receiver Randy Moss, Felix, Catchings, and Brooks.

Catchings graduated from Duncanville High School in Duncanville, Texas after spending her first two years of high school playing basketball with her sister, Tauja, at Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, Illinois. Catchings went on to star at the University of Tennessee, where she was a four-time Kodak/WBCA All-America first team selection, consensus National Player of the Year in 2000, and won a national title in 1998.

Drafted by the Fever with the third overall selection in 2001, Catchings has had a prolific professional career. She is an eight-time All-Star, nine-time selection to the All-Defensive First Team, five-time Defensive Player of the Year, 2011 WNBA MVP, and 2012 WNBA Finals MVP. Catchings is the WNBA's all-time leader in career steals and free throws made, and ranks in the top five in both points and rebounds. She is a fixture on the United States national team, having won three Olympic gold medals as members of the 2004, 2008, and 2012 Olympic teams.

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