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Knoxville Catholic Celebrates Seven Gatorade Players of the Year

Now in its  37th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, Knoxville Catholic High School is proud to have been honored by the Gatorade Player of the Year seven times since the inception of the award in 1985. 

The Gatorade Player of the Year award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes these players as the very best in their sport across the state of Tennessee.

Knoxville Catholic has been blessed to have had seven total “State of Tennessee POY” winners in five different sports since the Gatorade Player of Year was created in 1985. 
Jeff Christianson – Baseball 1996-1997
Harrison Smith – Football 2006-2007
Tim Baker – Soccer 2011-2012
Jake Renfree – Cross Country 2018-2019
Megan Ferowich –  Cross Country 2009-2010
Joanna Thompson – Cross Country 2010-2011
Devyn Dunn – Volleyball 2021-2022

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport.

Since the program’s inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators. To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit or follow us on social media on Facebook at, Instagram at and Twitter at
Author: Pam Rhoades  

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