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Caitlin Clark - The Future of Basketball [electronic resource]

When Caitlin Clark scored 41 points to help Iowa upset defending national champion and previously undefeated South Carolina in the 2023 Final Four, ESPN averaged 5.5 million viewers for the game. It was a record for a national semifinal. Iowa lost to LSU in the championship, but the game registered 9.9 million viewers. Another record. Eight months after the 2023 tournament, the NCAA announced a new media rights deal with ESPN for sports including women’s basketball. The NCAA president said the deal pegged the worth of women’s basketball at $65 million per year —10 times the value of the current contract that ends in 2024. Thank you, Caitlin Clark. Another example of how big of a game-changer she was came early in the 2023-24 season. Iowa staged an exhibition against DePaul at the Hawkeyes football stadium. The event dubbed “Crossover At Kinnick” pulled in 55,646 fans. The previous attendance record in women’s basketball was 29,619 for the 2002 NCAA title game between UConn and Oklahoma at the Alamodome in San Antonio. In 2021, after years of legal turbulence, college athletes were allowed to earn money for their name, image and likeness. Clark was the right player at the right moment to capitalize on opportunities with blue-chip brands including Nike, Gatorade, Bose, State Farm and Buick. In Caitlin Clark: The Future of Basketball, we follow the evolution of how a women’s basketball player from West Des Moines, Iowa, became a national phenomenon.
[Place of publication not identified] : A360 Media, LLC, [date of publication not identified]
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Caitlin Clark - The Future of Basketball
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