Iowa star Caitlin Clark was named Naismith Player of the Year on Wednesday.
The Hawkeyes guard has led the program to a prolific season that finds Iowa matching up against reigning national champion South Carolina on Friday in the Final Four. Iowa (30-6) will play in its first national semifinal since 1993 after the Hawkeyes defeated Louisville, 97-83, in the Elite Eight on Sunday.
In Sunday’s win, Clark became the first player in women’s tournament history to record a 40-point triple-double, finishing with 41 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.
The 21-year-old also became the first Division I basketball player in NCAA history to record at least 900 points and 300 assists in a single season. No man or woman had previously accomplished the feat.
“Winning this award is a huge accomplishment,” Clark said in a team statement. “This is such a huge honor for our family and program. None of this would be possible without my tremendous support system.”
Clark averages 27.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 8.6 assists per game this season while accounting for 57 percent of Iowa’s offensive production in points and assists. She has also notched at least 25 points, with five or more rebounds and assists on 40 different occasions during her college career, the most in NCAA women’s basketball history.
South Carolina star Aliyah Boston, the ’22 Naismith Player of the Year, was named the ’23 Naismith Defensive Player of the Year, while Gamecocks coach Dawn Staley was named National Coach of the Year. The duo won both honors, respectively, in ’22 as well.