Iowa women's basketball standout Caitlin Clark named AP national player of the year

Dargan Southard
Des Moines Register

DALLAS — Another day in Dallas, another national award heading Caitlin Clark’s way.

The Iowa superstar was named the Associated Press national player of the year Thursday morning, one day after she won the Naismith Trophy at the Reunion Tower in Dallas. These are the first of several player of the year awards likely heading Clark’s way.

“This is what I’ve loved to do ever since I was a young girl,” said Clark, whose Hawkeyes will face top seed South Carolina in Friday’s Final Four matchup. “I’m lucky I get to do it on the biggest stage with my best friends. Everything else has come along with that, whether it awards, wins, championships. It’s because we have fun playing basketball.”

Caitlin Clark takes questions after winning the Naismith Trophy in Dallas, Texas, on Wednesday.

Eighteen times this season Clark has poured in 25-plus points, five-plus assists and five-plus rebounds — an NCAA record. She’s the only player in the country with more than 950 points, 300 assists, 240 rebounds and 45 steals this year.

Clark is also the first player in Division I women’s basketball history with more than 900 points and 300 assists in the same campaign. It’s no surprise Clark ranks top-five nationally in at least 10 offensive categories.

This year alone, Clark has been named the Big Ten player of the year, a unanimous first-team AP all-American and now has racked up a pair of player of the year awards.

After Clark missed out on the player of the year accolades last season, Iowa fans might’ve rioted had the awards not come Clark’s way this season.

“They love our team so much,” Clark said. “I think they can see the love, the joy, the passion we have for one another. They’ve been in Carver-Hawkeye Arena all season long. They’ve seen the product we’re producing. Hawkeye fans are like no other.”

And neither is Clark.   

Dargan Southard is a sports trending reporter and covers Iowa athletics for the Des Moines Register and Email him at