Iowa’s Caitlin Clark Declares for WNBA Draft

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The most prolific scorer in college basketball history, Caitlin Clark of Iowa, has decided to forego her fifth year of eligibility and go to the WNBA next season. This Sunday, Iowa wraps up its regular season with a game against No. 2 Ohio State, and Clark is expected to wrap-up her pursuit of the all-time scoring record, women or men.

She currently sits 17 points behind the record set by Pete Maravich in 1970, and Clark is averaging more than 30 points per game.

On February 15, she passed Washington’s Kelsey Plum for the women’s NCAA Division I scoring record, and on Wednesday, she passed Kansas Hall of Famer Lynette Woodard, the leader in AIAW large-school scoring. Woodard played before 1982 and prior to the NCAA accepting women’s athletics records. So even though she has been the highest-scoring women’s basketball player of all-time, it wasn’t recognized as the record by the NCAA.

Now that silly asterisk is gone, with Clark uniting all the women’s records. And it won’t be long before she owns all college basketball scoring records. has posted odds on the method in which she passes Maravich, and a 3-point FG is the heavy favorite at -180.

What Clark doesn’t yet have is a national championship, finishing as the runner-up last season to LSU and rival Angel Reese. Clark addressed that hole in her resume when she made her announcement.

“While this season is far from over and we have a lot more goals to achieve, it will be my last one at Iowa. I am excited to be entering the 2024 WNBA Draft.”

Iowa online sportsbooks have the Hawkeyes at +800 to achieve that final goal, which is tied with LSU for the second-shortest odds behind undefeated South Carolina.

Her Future WNBA Home

The owner of the first pick in the WNBA Draft is the Indiana Fever, who finished 10th of the 12 teams last year, but won the No. 1 pick in the lottery in December. The draft is April 15 in Brooklyn, and for the first time, partially because of Clark mania, it will be held with fans in attendance. Tickets go on sale next week, and they are sure to sell out quickly.

As are tickets for the beginning of season for the Fever. Going to Indiana keeps Clark relatively close to her rabid fans in Iowa, and it will pair her with the No. 1 overall pick from last season, Aliyah Boston – the Rookie of the Year in 2023.

Basketball online sportsbooks have also caught the “Fever.” Even though they finished just 13-27 last year, has them as low as +1800 to win the WNBA title, the sixth-shortest odds in the league, and odds that make them favorites to pass five playoff teams from last year.

The Fever’s social media team has already hit the ground running, sending out reminders of when the draft will be held, calls for season ticket sales, and one post that simply said “No. 1” with an hourglass. The fans in Indiana and all across women’s basketball can’t wait.

Clark’s Impact

It’s not an exaggeration to say that Clark will enter the WNBA with more name recognition than anyone before her. She’s already a partner with iconic brands like Gatorade, Nike, and State Farm, and her branding opportunities will continue to grow. And through her, so will the opportunities for the WNBA.

Last year, Clark and Iowa played in the most-watched game in the history of women’s basketball when they played LSU in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament finals. When the WNBA held its draft a couple of weeks later, it was the most-watched in two decades. When the league began play in May, the ratings for opening night were double from the year before.

In 30 of Iowa’s 32 games this season, the game has either been sold-out or set arena attendance records for women’s basketball. And even before Clark’s announcement this week, tickets for her final game in Iowa this Sunday were going for more than $500. Now there are tickets as far back as row 40 that cost more than $900.

Iowa has now played in the most-watched women’s basketball game on six different networks, and the Indiana Fever are about to take that mantle.

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