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Joe Mauer inducted into National High School Hall of Fame

Posted: Monday, July 1, 2024 - 3:43 PM

Mauer NFHS Hall of Fame

BOSTON --- As he has done throughout his high school and professional career, Minnesota’s Joe Mauer met the press on Tuesday, July 1 during an introductory news conference as part of the enshrinement process for the National High School Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024. He is one of 11 inductees that will formally be enshrined later this evening at the Boston Marriott Copley Place hotel, host site of the 2024 National Federation of State High School Association’s Summer Meeting.

Mauer, a 2001 graduate of Cretin-Derham Hall in St. Paul, is the 17th Minnesotan inducted into the prestigious high school hall of fame that recognizes elite-level excellence and contributions by coaches, officials, administrators, athletes and Fine Arts leaders. 

In a large standing room-only rectangular-shaped conference room stuffed with press, state association leadership, and yes, even fans, Mauer was all smiles as he enjoyed listening to the high school journeys of others. 

“This is a little bit like an all-star game,” said Mauer, who grew up on Lexington Parkway in St. Paul’s Midway neighborhood. “There are so many great people up on that stage and in the class that have given in so many ways to so many individuals to enhance the high school experiences of all. I love being a part of this. I am learning so much from all of them. And they would all agree, we didn’t get here alone. We had great support and leadership along the way.”

Mauer’s high school days are filled with sacred memories. He deflects chatter about the multitude of individual accolades, including national player of the year recognition in two sports and team state championships, in favor of highlighting a high school experience filled with excellence in academics and lessons he learned in leadership, respect, commitment, high morals, values and kindness. 

Combine those characteristics with an athletic resume that illustrates a once-in-a-generation kind of talent, and it is easy to understand why Mauer has become a legendary figure in Minnesota lore, a journey capped by an all-star career with the hometown Twins.

Mauer is amidst a tidal wave of recognition ceremonies paying tribute to his athletic excellence. He recently was selected as the Catholic Athletic Association’s top male athlete of the past 25 years. Mauer was also inducted into the prestigious St. Paul-based Mancini’s Hall of Fame, a who’s-who collection of athletic stars, coaches and leaders. On July 21, Mauer will be enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., in his first year of eligibility.

“It’s been a whirlwind, but really rewarding,” he said.

Mauer was the last inductee to leave the news conference. He spent time visiting with appreciative fans, signing autographs and taking pictures. Mauer smiled throughout, showing joy as he engaged with well-wishers.

“I love meeting people and learning new things,” he said. “You only get one chance to make a great impression. I want to do that for others.”

Mauer created scores of memories for others to enjoy and relish during a stellar prep career in football, basketball and baseball. 

In two seasons as the Raiders starting quarterback, he compiled more than 5,500 passing yards and 73 touchdowns. He led the Raiders to two consecutive Class AAAAA football championship games, including winning it in his junior year. He was selected the USA Today national player of the year in football following his senior season. 

In baseball, the do-everything Mauer never hit below .542 and struck out just once during his high school career. While he was primarily a catcher, he also excelled as a pitcher, infielder or outfielder. He hit .605 during his senior season and tied a national prep record by hitting a home run in seven consecutive games. He also played catcher for the Team USA Junior National Team. He was the 2001 Gatorade National Player of the Year following his senior season of baseball. 

During basketball, Mauer was also a force. After averaging nine points per game as a sophomore, he then averaged 20 points per game over his final two prep seasons. He was a two-time all-state selection. 

While Mauer had Division I offers in each of his three sports, he gave a verbal commitment to play football at Florida State University. That didn’t materialize as he was the No. 1 selection in the Major League Baseball Amateur Draft by the Minnesota Twins. Despite opting to play baseball, Florida State remained committed to their offer if baseball didn’t pan out. 

But it did. 

Mauer assembled a Hall of Fame career that included an American League MVP Award, three consecutive Gold Glove Awards, four All-Star Game appearances, three batting titles and four Silver Slugger Awards. 

“No doubt about it, he is a one-of-a-kind,” said Jim O’Neill, his former Cretin-Derham Hall baseball coach. “He is a very special kind of player and person. It’s an honor for all of us who got to be a part of his journey. And what a journey it has been.”

Joe Mauer NFHS High School Hall of Fame Press Conference | Opening Comments
Joe Mauer NFHS High School Hall of Fame Press Conference | Memories of High School Participation
Joe Mauer NFHS High School Hall of Fame | Being a Student-Athlete

Mauer receives his National High School Hall of Fame award from League Executive Director Erich Martens.

Mauer Greet Fans
Mauer Autographs
mauer Autographs
Mauer Football
Mauer Basketball
Mauer baseball
MN Winners
Mauer's 2022 MSHSL Hall of Fame Induction video

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