Iowa Hawkeyes Surprise Caitlin Clark With Player of the Year Award in Comical Wheel of Fortune Skit

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When Caitlin Clark was named AP Player of the Year in women's basketball Thursday, the Iowa Hawkeyes gave her the royal treatment—or, rather, the Wheel of Fortune treatment.

Clark was unveiled as the Player of the Year in women’s basketball for the second consecutive season, receiving 35 of 36 possible first-place votes. She is the first player to win the award in back-to-back years since Breanna Stewart won three straight from 2014 to ‘16. 

In the grand reveal, the Hawkeyes women’s basketball team set up a Wheel of Fortune-style skit to celebrate Clark’s latest accomplishment. Coach Lisa Bluder pretended to be Vanna White, one of the game show’s legendary co-hosts, while Clark’s teammates took turns guessing letters to complete the phrase. 

One player took a wistful stab at the phrase: “Caitlin is coming back?” 

Not quite. The winning phrase, backed by the uproarious cheers of the Hawkeyes team, was, “Caitlin is the AP Player of the Year.”

Last month, Clark became the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer in men’s or women’s college basketball history, surpassing Pete Maravich’s longtime record of 3,667 points. The senior guard already has declared for the 2024 WNBA draft and will get her last chance to clinch the elusive NCAA title this postseason. 

After beating reigning national champions LSU on Monday, Clark and the No. 1-seeded Hawkeyes will play aginst the No. 3-seeded UConn Huskies in the Final Four on Friday in Cleveland.

Kristen Wong


Kristen Wong is a Staff Writer on the Breaking & Trending News Team at Sports Illustrated. She has been a sports journalist since 2020. Before joining SI, Kristen covered four NFL teams as an associate editor with the FanSided NFL Network and worked as a staff writer for the brand’s flagship site. She has written about soccer, the NFL, NBA, and MLB since 2020, and outside of work, has dreams of running her own sporty dive bar.