Temple star Fatima Maddox returns from globetrotting
Lynette Woodard cracked headlines in 1985 when she became the first women to ever put on a Harlem Globetrotters uniform and take the floor. In doing so, she not only routinely embarrassed opponents and occasionally brutalized teammates, but gave a generation of young female athletes the inspiration to break through.
One of those women was Fatima Maddox, who got her start playing under Dawn Staley at Temple from 2004-07. There, she fine tuned her pinpoint shooting precision and explosive style of play that in 2011 made her the first female Globetrotter in 20 years.
“I’m so honored to be part of the legacy,” says Maddox, whose teammates call her “TNT.” She speaks highly of Woodard, rattling off facts from her predecessor’s career as if she carries them in her back pocket.
But it’s not only her personal heroes whom she credits with her career success; her time at Temple played a huge role in preparing her for life as the ninth female Globetrotter ever.
“Go Owls,” she says. “College was an essential part of my development as a basketball player. I learned how to be disciplined and work hard – in all things, not just basketball. It feels good to come back. Like most people who leave, I didn’t think I’d ever play on this floor again.”
And thanks to that dedication, Maddox has had a plethora of opportunities. “I’ve been to France, Monaco, a lot of places,” she says. “It’s given me experiences I would have never had otherwise. But the fans keep it fresh for us. They really make it fun.”
Maddox and the Globetrotters will bring their eight decades of intensely skilled basketball to the Wells Fargo Center on March 8 and 9, then bring Maddox back to the Liacouras Center for the first time since her graduation on March 10.