Four members of the CEHHS family competed at the 2016 Olympic Games in women’s basketball, swimming, and track and field. Learn a little more about these alumni and student-athletes who make us so proud!
Tamika Catchings (USA)
2000 & 2005, Sport Management
Catchings rates as one of the greatest Tennessee basketball players in history. She was a four-time Kodak All-American and the AP and Naismith player of the year in 2000. She ranks fourth in Lady Vol history in career points (2,113) and fifth in rebounds (1,004), one of only two players in Lady Vol history to record 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.
Since graduating from Tennessee, Catchings has gone on to be one of the most influential players in WNBA history. Catchings is set to become the WNBA’s only player ever to spend an entire career of fifteen or more seasons with the same franchise. The Indiana Fever forward earned WNBA Finals MVP honors while leading the Fever to the 2012 WNBA championship. She earned league MVP honors in 2011. Catchings ranks as the league’s all-time leader in free throws and steals, while ranking second in points and rebounds. She is the WNBA career playoffs leader in points, rebounds, free throws and steals. Catchings will retire at the end of the 2016 WNBA season.
She is just the third American basketball player, male or female, to earn four Olympic gold medals following Team USA’s undefeated run at the games in Rio. Catchings also helped Team USA claim gold in 2004, 2008, and 2012.
Kira Toussaint (the Netherlands)
Senior, Sport Management
A senior member of the Tennessee swimming and diving team, Toussaint made her first trip to the Olympics as a member of the Netherlands’ team. She finished 18th in the 100m backstroke in the Olympic preliminaries—just two spots away from advancing to the semifinals. She is the first woman swimmer in UT history to represent her country while still in college. In her debut year as a Vol, Toussaint was part of three winning SEC relays and earned five All-America honors. She also broke the school record in the 100-yard backstroke.
Molly Hannis (USA)
2015, Sport Management
Hannis became the first swimmer from UT to join Team USA since 2008. She finished second at the Olympic Trials in the 200m breaststroke to book her ticket to the games, where she placed 16th overall in the semifinals of the women’s 200m breaststroke. Hannis, a native of Santa Rosa, California, has been swimming professionally for the last year as a member of the Tennessee Aquatics club. During her UT career (2012–2015), she was a 14-time All-American and a four-time SEC champion. She swam the breaststroke leg on two NCAA championship relay teams in 2013 to help Tennessee to a third-place finish in the team standings. She remains the Vols’ record holder in the 100m and 200m breaststroke.
Christian Coleman (USA)
Junior, Sport Management
Coleman enjoyed a spectacular 2016 season at Tennessee. He was named a 2016 USTFCCCA Indoor Track and Field First-Team All-American for the 60m, 200m, and 4x400m relay and captured the 200m national title. He was also the 2016 SEC Indoor Champion in the 60m. Coleman was the 2016 SEC Men’s Indoor Runner of the Year and USTFCCCA South Regional Athlete of the Year. He garnered USTFCCCA Outdoor Track and Field First-Team All-America honors in June after taking second place in both the 100m and 200m at the 2016 NCAA outdoor track and field championships. He set a new Tennessee record with a 10.03 in the 100m semifinals at the NCAA competition, breaking Justin Gatlin’s 2002 school mark of 10.05. He was honored by the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame as its male amateur athlete of the year.
At the Olympics, Coleman ran the second leg of the 4x100m relay, helping secure a spot in the finals for Team USA. A disqualification in the final, resulting from the hand off of a baton outside the exchange zone, prevented Coleman and fellow Vol Justin Gatlin from winning a bronze medal.
Photos courtesy of UT Athletics