High School Star
In her sophomore year at Rio Mesa High School in Oxnard, California, Jones set a national high school record in the 200-meter, at 22.76, and was named Track & Field News's Female High School Athlete of the Year. The following summer, she won five state titles and set a U.S. high school record in the 200 meters (22.58 seconds). Playing basketball for Thousand Oaks High School her junior and senior years, she also trained with Mike Powell, world-record holder in the long jump. During 1992, her first year to try the long jump, she leapt twenty-three feet, the second-longest jump ever made by a high school girl, at the state championships. In June 1992, at age sixteen, Jones tried out for the Olympics and missed making the U.S. team by only .07 second. Jones received the Gatorade Circle of Champions National High School Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year Award in 1991, 1992, and 1993. She was the only athlete to win the award more than once and the first non-senior to win the award.
As a senior basketball player, Jones won the California Interscholastic Federation Division I Player of the Year award. Thousand Oaks had a 60-4 record the two years that Jones was on the team and won the state championship in 1992. Her success in both track and basketball won her an athletic scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she would play both sports.
- Marion Jones - Tar Heels Point Guard
- Marion Jones - "i Want To Be An Olympic Champion"
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