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Katrina McClain

You won't find many, if any, who could argue against Katrina McClain being proclaimed as the greatest power forward in women's basketball history.

Her basketball resume glitters and is chock-full of achievements and accolades.

A three-time U.S. Olympic medalist, including gold medals in 1988 and 1996, "Tree" as she was known, also scored FIBA World Championship gold medals in 1986 and 1990, Goodwill Games gold medals in 1986 and 1990, a Pan American Games gold medal in 1987 and the 1993 U.S. Olympic Festival gold medal.

Twice selected USA Basketball's Female Athlete of the Year, all told, McClain played on 13 USA Basketball teams and compiled a gaudy overall win-loss record of 118-5 (.959 winning percentage) while winning eight gold, one silver and three bronze medals.

Her name is listed throughout the USA Basketball women's Olympic, World Championship, Goodwill Games and Pan American Games record sections.

She was a member of the historic USA Basketball Women's National Team that rolled to a remarkable 52-0 record in the 10-month lead up to the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. At the 1996 Summer Games, she was selected to help carry the IOC flag into the stadium during Opening Ceremonies, then helped lead the U.S. to an 8-0 record and the gold medal.

“There are coaches who think she may be the best power player to ever play,” said University of Georgia head coach Andy Landers, who coached McClain from 1983-87. “And I would tend to agree with that.”

Olympic Honors:

  • Selected one of eight individuals to help carry the IOC flag into the stadium during Opening Ceremonies of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

Halls of Fame:

  • Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (2012).
  • Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame (2006).
  • Georgia Sports Hall of Fame (2005).

Honors:

  • Named USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year two times (1988 and 1992).
  • The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association named their annual award for the nation’s top collegiate power forward after Katrina McClain - the Katrina McClain Power Forward Award. The positional award was created to recognize the top collegiate power forward in Division I college basketball.
  • One of three University of Georgia women's basketball players to have her number (#32) retired.
  • Named to the five-member 1994 FIBA World Championship All-Tournament Team.
  • Earned 1983 U.S. Olympic Festival All-Tournament honors.


USA Basketball Notes:

  • Gold Medals: 1996 and 1988 Olympics; 1990 and 1986 FIBA World Championships; 1990 and 1986 Goodwill Games; 1987 Pan American Games; 1983 U.S. Olympic Festival.
  • Silver Medal: 1985 World University Games.
  • Bronze Medals: 1994 World Cup, 1992 Olympics, 1991 Pan American Games.
  • Tournament Titles: 1996 International Basketball Challenge Tournament (China), 1996 Opals' World Challenge Tournament (Australia).
  • Played on 13 USA Basketball teams and compiled an overall win-loss record of 106-5 (.955 winning percentage) while winning eight gold, one silver and two bronze medals.
  • Over the course of her USA Basketball career, played in 110 games, compiled 1,503 points (13.7 ppg.), 989 rebounds (9.0 rpg.), 144 assists (1.3 apg.), 102 blocked shots (0.9 bpg.) and 137 steals (1.2 spg.). Shot 59.8% from the field and 67.1% from the foul line.
  • Co-captain of the 1996 Olympic gold medal team.
  • Member of the 1996 gold medalist U.S. Olympic Team that finished with a perfect 8-0 record. Started all eight games, averaged a team second-best 14.1 ppg., a team-high 8.3 rpg.  Shot a team-leading 73.9% (51-69 FGs) from the field.
  • As a member of the historic 1995-96 USA Basketball Women’s National Team  that compiled a 52-0 record, played in 40 games and averaged 12.3 points (third highest) and a team-best 9.3 rebounds a game, and shot a USA-high 63.0% (204-324 FGs) from the field. 
  • Member of the 1994 USA World Championship Team that captured a bronze medal, averaged a team-high 14.6 ppg. and 11.1 rpg. and was named to the five-member World Championship All-Tournament Team.
  • Member of the 1992 bronze medal winning USA Olympic Team, averaged 11.4 ppg. and a team-high 9.6 rpg.
  • Member of 1991 USA Pan American Games team that earned the bronze medal, averaged 15.3 ppg. and a team-high 8.8 rpg.
  • Member of 1990 USA World Championship and Goodwill Games teams that captured gold medals, finished as the team's second-leading scorer, averaging 13.8 ppg. and 7.5 rpg. in the World Championship and 14.0 ppg. and 10.8 rpg. in the Goodwill Games.
  • Member of 1988 gold medal U.S. Olympic Team and led the team in scoring and rebounding, averaging 17.6 ppg. and 10.4 rpg., and finished second in steals (3.4 spg.) and third in field goal percentage (.547).
  • Member of 1987 USA Pan American Games Team that captured the gold medal, led the team averaging 17.8 ppg. and 10.0 rpg.
  • Member of 1986 USA World Championship and Goodwill Games teams that captured gold, averaged 14.0 ppg. at the World Championship and 14.0 ppg. and 6.0 rpg. at the Goodwill Games.
  • Member of 1985 World University Games Team, was the team's leading scorer and rebounder, averaging 17.3 ppg. and 7.7 rpg.
  • Named All-Tournament at the 1983 U. S. Olympic Festival after averaging 13 ppg. and 9.3 rpg. for the South.

 

USA Basketball Records:

  • In U.S. Olympic women's career records ranks fifth in points scored (258), fifth for points averaged (14.3); second for rebounds (166); first in rebounds averaged (9.2); fourth for blocked shots (13); and third for steals (40).
  • Set U.S. Olympic women's single-game record for rebounds, recording 16 vs. Japan (7/31/96) and vs. the Unified Team (8/5/92); field goals attempted with 23 vs. Soviet Union (9/27/88). Also has recorded the fifth (tied) highest single-game scoring with 27 points vs. China (9/25/88) and the eighth (tied) highest scoring with 26 points vs. Australia (7/27/96).
  • Ranks fifth in U.S. Olympic women's competition records for scoring with 113 points (1996); second for points averaged with 17.6 ppg. (1988); second for field goal percentage shooting 73.9% in 1996; third for rebounds with 66 (1996); ranks first (10.4 rpg. in 1988), second (9.6 rpg. in 1992) and fifth (8.3 rpg. in 1996) for rebounding average; and fifth for steals averaged with 3.4 spg. (1988).
  • Ranks first among all USA women's FIBA World Cup career leaders for blocked shots (26), second for rebounds (180); and fourth for points (310).
  • Set USA women's FIBA World Cup single-game record for rebounds with 19 vs. Brazil (6/11/94) and field goals made with 13 vs. Brazil (6/11/94). Recorded the third highest single-game scoring with 29 points vs. Brazil (6/11/94). 
  • Ranks third in USA Women's FIBA World Cup competition record for rebounds with 78 (1994); first for rebounds averaged with 11.1 rpg. (1994), third (11 in 1990) and fourth (10 in 1994) for blocked shots; fourth (1.4 bpg. in 1990) and fifth (1.4 in 1994) for blocked shots averaged; and fifth (tied) for steals averaged with 2.7 (1986).
  • In USA women's Pan American Games career records ranks first for rebounds (93); fourth (tied) for games played (10); and fifth for points scored (163).
  • In USA women's Pan American Games competition records, ranks third with 10.0 (1987) and fifth with 8.8 (1991) for rebounds averaged.
  • Tied USA women's Pan American Games single-game record for scoring with 30 points vs. Brazil (8/23/87).
  • In USA women's Goodwill Games competition records, ranks first for rebounds with 54 (1990); first for rebounds averaged with 10.8 rpg. (1990); fourth (tied) for points with 70 (1990); second (tied) for blocked shots with five (1990).
  • In USA women's Goodwill Games single-game records, ranks third for points scored with 23 vs. Soviet Union (8/1/90).

 

Professional Notes:

  • Played professionally for eight years, including overseas, and ended her professional career in 1997 with the Atlanta Glory of the American Basketball League (ABL). She was honored as a member of the 1998 ABL All-Star Game Eastern Conference Team.
  • In 1997, with the ABL's Atlanta Glory, played in 34 games, started 30, averaged 30.4 minutes, 12.2 ppg., 7.6 rpg., and 1.1 bpg., while shooting 48.5% from the field and 82.2% from the foul line.
  • Played professionally overseas for Kyoto Petroleum (Japan) from 1989–1991; Sidis Ancona (Italy) in 1992; Valencia (Spain) from 1993–1995; and Galatasaray (Turkey) from 1993–1995.

 

Collegiate Notes:

  • During her four seasons (1983-84 - 1986-87), Georgia compiled a 116-15 overall record (88.5%), participated in four NCAA Tournaments, finished as the NCAA runner-up in 1985 and won two Southeastern Conference (SEC) titles (1984 and 1986).
  • Named the 1987 National Player of the Year and was the 1987 recipient of the Honda Sports Award for basketball.
  • Named consensus 1986 and 1987 All-American.
  • Named 1987 SEC Player of the Year.
  • Named to 1984 Freshman All-American team, and SEC Freshman of the Year to become the first SEC Freshman of the Year recipient. 
  • Named MVP of the 1986 SEC Tournament and to the 1987 All-SEC Tournament Team.
  • Named to 1985 All-NCAA Final Four Team.
  • Selected All-SEC first team in 1986 and 1987.
  • Over her four-year career, made 62.0% of her field goal attempts, a school record.
  • Ranked as the NCAA leader in field goal percentage in 1984 (.695), ranked eighth in NCAA shooting in 1985 (.626), and ranked third in field goal accuracy in 1986 (.662).
  • Holds Georgia single-game records for points scored (43 vs. UNC-Charlotte in 1987), field goal percentage (11-12 vs. S.F. Austin in 1984), free throws made (15 vs. South Alabama in 1986), free throws attempted (21 vs. South Alabama in 1986), free throw percentage (11-11 vs. Kentucky in 1986) and rebounds (24 vs. Western Kentucky in 1986).
  • Graduated holding Georgia single-season records for points scored (796 in 1987), field goals made (310 in 1987), field goal percentage (.695 in 1984), free throws made (176 in 1987), free throws attempted (240 in 1987) and blocked shots (97 in 1985 and 1986).
  • Ranks as Georgia's all-time leader for field goal percentage (.620), blocked shots (290), free throws made (449), free throws attempted (616), is second for rebounds (1,193), third for points scored (2,195) and ninth for steals (200).
  • In NCAA Tournament games, holds the record for field goal shooting percentage, hitting 60.0% of her 84 attempts in the 12 games she played (1984–1987). In the 1985 NCAA semifinal game against Western Kentucky, made 10-of-12 field goal attempts, a record field goal percentage for NCAA semifinal games.
  • Ranks third on Georgia’s all-time career charts with 2,195 points (17.6 ppg.) and second in career rebounds with 1,193 rebounds (9.5).
  • One of only three Georgia women's basketball players to have her number retired (#32).

 

Personal Notes:

  • Has three sisters and two brothers.
  • Her father was a DJ at the local radio station, a pastor, a principal and played football for the Baltimore Colts. Her mother was a registered nurse.
  • Grew up in Charleston, South Carolina, and attended St. Andrews High School. As a senior she helped lead the team to a 30–0 record and a state championship.

USA Basketball Statistics

YEAR G/S FGM-A PCT 3PM-A PCT FTM-A PCT REB PTS AST BLK STL
1996 OLY 8/8   51-  69 .739 0-    0 .--- 11-  17 .647   66/  8.3   113/ 14.1 15   5   8
*1995-96 WNT 40/- 204-324 .630 1-    2 .500 82-123 .667 370/  9.3    491/ 12.3 66 27 51
1994 WC 7/7   41-  65 .631 0-    0 .--- 20-  24 .883   78/11.1   102/ 14.6   8 10   2
1992 OLY 5/5   23-  53 .434 0-    0 .--- 11-  18 .611   48/  9.6     57/ 11.4   7   5 15
1991 PAG 6/-   33-  63 .524 0-    0 .--- 26-  38 .684   53/  8.8     92/ 15.3 10   1   7
1990 WC 8/-   43-  84 .512 0-    0 .--- 24-  32 .750   60/  7.5   110/ 13.8   6 11   9
1990 GWG 5/-   29-  56 .518 0-    0 .--- 12-  14 .857   54/10.8     70/ 14.0   7   5   8
1988 OLY 5/-   35-  64 .547 0-    0 .--- 18-  26 .692   52/10.4     88/ 17.6   5   3   1
1987 PAG 4/-   23-  40 .575 0-    0 .--- 25-  35 .714   40/10.0     71/ 17.8   2   3   4
1986 WC 7/-   40-  64 .625 0-    0 .--- 18-  32 .563   42/  6.0     98/ 14.0   5   5 19
1986 GWG 5/-   24-  40 .600 0-    0 .---   7-  13 .538   43/  8.6     55/ 11.0   9   4   6
1985 WUG 6/-   41-  65 .631 0-    0 .--- 22-  42 .524   46/  7.7   104/ 17.3   4 11   7
1983 USOFS 4/0   19-  27 .704

14-  18 .778   37/  9.3     52/ 13.0   0 12   0
TOTALS *110 606-1014 .598 1-    2 .500 290-432 .671 989/  9.0 1503/ 13.7 144 102 137

*The 1995-96 USA Basketball Women’s Senior National Team played 52 games, however, statistics for two of the Senior National Team’s games are not available, also, statistics except for points are not available for one game during the Senior National Team’s tour. McClain's game total of 110 reflects all games, her point total reflects points scored in 110 games, all other statistics are for 109 games.

 

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