Tamika Catchings was a boundless source of inspiration for teammate Semeka Randall.
But before Catchings became a career All-American, not to mention a national player of the year, Randall took notice of the college credits her classmate was piling up.
“I knew coming in that she was a phenomenal player,” Randall said. “What Catch didn’t know was that she inspired me from an academic standpoint. She doesn’t know how much she inspired me.”
Randall played a strong game of catch-up in the classroom. Like Catchings, Randall graduated a semester early. She earned a degree in speech communications and praise from Kerry Howland, then the assistant athletic director for academics and student life.
“She uses the tutors and the help,” Howland said of Randall before the guard’s senior year. “She constantly communicates with her instructors. I wish I could get other kids to ask for help like she does.”
Speaking of both Catchings and Randall, Howland said: “They inspire me.”
The ripple effect is evident on this year’s roster. Seniors Vicki Baugh and Glory Johnson both are graduate students.