Clark Named Naismith Trophy Finalist

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa women’s basketball sophomore Caitlin Clark was named a Naismith Player of the Year Finalist, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Tuesday.

The list of finalists include Clark, South Carolina’s Aliyah Boston, NC State’s Elissa Cunane and Baylor’s NaLyssa Smith.

Clark, a Des Moines, Iowa, native, led the nation in points per game (27.0), assists per game (8.0), total assists (257), total points (863), free throws made (200), triple doubles (5) and 30-point games (11). Clark is the only women’s basketball player to lead the country in both assists per game and points per game in a single season.

Clark registered five triple-doubles this season, leading the country in most career triple-doubles by an active player with six. Clark’s six career triple-doubles ties former Hawkeye Sam Logic’s Big Ten record (2011-15) for most in a career and ties for the fifth most single season (5) and career (6) triple-doubles in NCAA Division I history.

In January, Clark joined the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, James Hardin, Luka Dončić and Giannis Antetokounmpo as the only NBA, WNBA, Division I men’s and women’s basketball to record back-to-back 30-point triple doubles since 2000. She is one of 10 women’s basketball players (15 times) to register back-to-back triple doubles in their careers — the only NCAA player (male or female) to do so with 30-plus points in the pair.

Clark broke the 1,000-career point barrier against Evansville in early January and became the fastest Division I player (men’s or women’s) to reach 1,500 career points over the last 20 seasons, reaching the feat in 56 games.

Clark set a career-high 46 points against No. 6 Michigan, registering her 12th double-double of the season with 10 assists and breaking her third women’s basketball arena scoring record. She now holds the scoring records at Iowa’s Carver-Hawkeye Arena (44), Michigan’s Crisler Center (46) and Nebraska’s Pinnacle Bank Arena (39).

Clark was named Big Ten Player of the Year and Big Ten Tournament MVP, while earning unanimous first team All-Big Ten honors and an All-Big Ten Tournament spot. She was named a Nancy Lieberman Point Guard of the Year finalist, Dawn Staley Award finalist, Naismith semifinalist and to the WBCA Wade Trophy Midseason Watch List and John R. Wooden Award National Ballot Top-15. She is a 2021-22 first team AP All-American, USBWA All-American and first team CoSIDA Academic All-American.