SALT LAKE CITY — Haloti Ngata got his football start in Utah before becoming an All-Pro NFL player, while Nick Rimando grew up in California before having a legendary Major League Soccer career in the Beehive State, but they’re both about to receive a notable honor from a local organization.
The Utah Sports Hall of Fame Foundation announced Thursday its honorees for induction into the Class of 2020, and that pair headlines the group of five, who all made marks in different sports.
Also included are former PGA Tour golfer Jay Don Blake, Olympic water polo player Courtney Young Johnson and former Weber State multisport athlete Teri Okelberry Spiers.
- Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando (18) makes a stop as Real Salt Lake and the Houston Dynamo play an MLS soccer match at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019. Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
- Salt Lake City native Courtney Johnson is at center of this group after winning the silver medal in water polo with the United States team at the 2000 Olympics. Ravell Call, Deseret News
- Jay Don Blake lines up a putt on the 18th green during the final round of the Champions Tour’s Principal Charity Classic golf tournament, Sunday, June 2, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. Charlie Neibergall
- Teri Spiers during her days competing at Weber State. Garry Bryant
Ngata, a defensive lineman, graduated from Highland High School, played collegiately at Oregon and then played in the Pro Bowl five times. He won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens in 2012 and retired last March.
Rimando played 20 years in MLS, 13 of which were for Real Salt Lake, and holds league records for career wins, shutouts, saves and overall appearances. He won an MLS title with RSL in 2009 and made several appearances for the United States national team.
Blake won just one PGA Tour event during his career, but finished in the Top 10 more than three dozen times. He won an NCAA title in 1980 at Utah State, which came after he graduated from Dixie High School.
Johnson, a graduate of Skyline High School, was part of the United States team that won a silver medal in the first ever Olympic women’s water polo competition at the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney, Australia.
Spiers graduated from Weber High School and then competed in both volleyball and track and field at Weber State. She made a big mark on the track, as she still holds the school record for the javelin after more than 30 years and long held records in the heptathlon, triple jump and 400-meter hurdles.
A banquet to honor the quintet is planned for Sept. 28 at the Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City.