Katrina McClain a basketball Hall of Fame finalist
Katrina McClain, a Charleston native and one of the most decorated players in USA Basketball history, is a finalist for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
McClain, a two-time Olympic gold medalist, is one of 12 finalists announced Friday.
"It's definitely a real prestigious award, and I'm excited to hear I am being considered," she said. "It's nice."
McClain, 46, lives in West Ashley, as she did when she was a standout athlete in the mid-1980s at the former St. Andrews High School. The mother of three children, she returned to Charleston after her basketball years to work with youths through the Katrina McClain Foundation, which helps youths who are at risk due to illiteracy, teen pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, lack of fitness or overall unhealthy lifestyles.
McClain was named national player of the year in 1987 while at the University of Georgia and later played on 11 U.S. national teams, including Olympic squads that won gold medals in 1988 and 1996 and a bronze in 1992. She was selected as USA Basketball's female athlete of the year in 1988 and 1992; was inducted into the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame and Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006; and to the National Federation of State High School Association's National High School Hall of Fame in 2010.
McClain said she learned while attending a Hall of Fame induction last year for her best friend, former Georgia Bulldog and Olympics teammate Tersea Edwards, that the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame honor might come her way this year.
McClain said she would love to be chosen but doesn't count on it.
"I don't really hold on to that sort of thing until it happens," she added.
McClain's father, Edward McClain, said Friday the family is proud of Katrina and excited for her about the honor she might receive.
"We are very ecstatic about it," he said.
"She's a hometown girl who has done well, and for that, we are grateful," he added.
The list of Hall of Fame finalists also includes Indiana Pacers great Reggie Miller.
Miller, a five-time All-Star, was joined as a first-time finalist by five-time NCAA Final Four coach Rick Pitino and former NBA coach Bill Fitch.
On the ballot again are Don Nelson, Maurice Cheeks, Bernard King, Dick Motta, Hank Nichols, Ralph Sampson, Jamaal Wilkes and the All-American Red Heads, known as the female version of the Harlem Globetrotters and the first women's professional basketball team.
The 2012 class will be announced April 2 at the NCAA Final Four in New Orleans. A finalist needs 18 of 24 votes from the Honors Committee for election.