Texas women’s basketball associate head coach Tina Thompson is one of 10 finalists to be considered for induction into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, Class of 2018. The public announcement was made Thursday during ESPN’s telecast of the Notre Dame at Louisville game.
Thompson, in her third season on the Texas coaching staff, was the first overall pick in the inaugural WNBA Draft, a two-time Olympic gold medalist
Throughout her 17-year professional playing career, Thompson was a four-time WNBA champion with the Houston Comets (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000), a member of the WNBA All-Decade team, an eight-time All-WNBA team selection, a nine-time WNBA All-Star, and the WNBA All-Star MVP in 2000.
After 12 seasons in Houston, the Los Angeles native returned to her hometown in 2009 as a member of the Los Angeles Sparks. She became the WNBA's all-time leading scorer on August 8, 2010, scoring her 6,264th career point to pass Lisa Leslie -- a former teammate of Thompson's at the high school, collegiate and professional levels.
Thompson ended her professional career with the Seattle Storm in 2013 as the league's all-time leading scorer with 7,488 points in 496 games played (15.1 ppg). She still remains the league's second-leading all-time scorer behind Diana Taurasi (7,867 points).
Thompson played collegiately at the University of Southern California (1993-1997) where she helped USC compile a 77-37 record, and led the team to three NCAA tournament appearances (1994, 1995, 1997), including an Elite Eight appearance in 1994.
In her first year in Austin, Thompson was responsible for the development of center Imani Boyette, who earned honorable mention All-America honors from both the Associated Press and the Women's Basketball Coaches Association. In 2015-16, Boyette became the first player in program history to reach the combined milestone of 1,000 career points, 1,000 career rebounds
Thompson was also responsible for the development of Kelsey Lang who was a 2016-17 All-Big 12 Honorable Mention selection, earned CoSIDA Academic All-District Honors and was a top-30 finalist for the prestigious Senior CLASS Award. Lang finished her UT career fifth all-time in games played (138), sixth in blocked shots (190) and 36th in scoring (1,086).
In each of her first seasons at UT, the Longhorns finished second among Big 12 Conference teams in rebounding margin, out-rebounding opponents by an average of 9.9 boards per game over the previous two years. Additionally, Texas averaged 5.5 blocks per game in Thompson's first two seasons.