Born July 21, 1979
Tamika Catchings is a former professional WNBA player who played her college basketball for Tennessee Volunteers legend Pat Summit. Her career highlights include WNBA championship (2012), WNBA Most Valuable Player Award (2011), WNBA Finals MVP Award (2012), five WNBA Defensive Player of the Year Awards (2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2012), four Olympic gold medals (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016), and the WNBA Rookie of the Year Award (2002). She has also been selected to ten WNBA All-Star teams, 12 All-WNBA teams, 12 All-Defensive teams and led the league in steals eight times. She is one of 9 women to win an Olympic Gold Medal, an NCAA Championship, and a WNBA Championship. In 2011, Catchings was voted in by fans as one of the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All Time.
Though she has had a successful career, Catchings also had many stumbling blocks throughout her life, including a speech impediment and a sight problem, and she credits her faith as a major factor in overcoming the obstacles which she faced.
The biggest of which came when she was injured during her senior year at Tennessee:
“It wasn’t until I got hurt my senior year, when I tore my ACL, and it was an eye-opening experience,” Catchings told CBN.com. “I put my focus on basketball. Basketball was my life. Every single day I was thinking about it and dreaming about it. When I got hurt it was like, take a step back and figure out where you are going, what direction you are going in.”
However, despite how difficult the circumstances seemed, Catchings turned to her faith to guide her.
“At first it was like, oh my gosh, I am hurt, I am not going to make the WNBA,” she said. “I worked so hard to get there. It was like, I did this and I did that. It was like, you take a step back and I was like, whoa. I didn’t do this. There was no way I can do this. God did this for me.”
Before long Catchings was on her way to a Hall of Fame career in the WNBA
“Peace definitely came from God,” she went on to tell CBN.com. “It came from realizing I needed to remove my focus from basketball back to God. It seems like every single time I have been hurt, it has been the same thing. It’s been that you get so caught up in what you are doing that you forget to give him the glory.”