Guard Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes gestures to the crowd after a basket against the Georgia Lady Bulldogs late in the second half during the second round of the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament at Carver-Hawkeye Arena
Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

Caitlin Clark: Fans And Those Who Look Up To Her Are 'Super Important'

Caitlin Clark seems to understand she is more than a wildly popular athlete. She's also a role model for those who love athletics, particularly basketball.

Now, Clark is leaving her run of back-to-back NCAA championship game appearances with the Iowa Hawkeyes behind her, setting her sights on the WNBA Draft. Not surprisingly, she's expected to be selected by the Indiana Fever with the No. 1 overall pick.

This comes after a remarkable college career in which Clark set multiple records, including plenty in the 2023-24 season, her final one with the Hawkeyes. Clark was a happening, making her sort of the Taylor Swift of college basketball. She may be the most popular athlete in the world right now.

But all the while, she has always taken time to interact with fans, chatting it up and signing autographs. For Clark, the fans are a major part of why she enjoys the game, she indicated in an interview with Today.

"The people I idolized in my life were either professional women's basketball players, professional soccer players, and that's what I wanted to be growing up," she said. "And I think understanding how big of an impact that can have on a young girl's life is super important.

"I always try to make as much time as I can for them. And just to see them scream your name or have your jersey on — that's something that never gets old."

Iowa's Caitlin Clark drives in the women's Elite eight matchup vs. LSU. (Getty)

Iowa's Caitlin Clark drives in the women's Elite eight matchup vs. LSU. (Getty)

Clark set the all-time NCAA Division 1 basketball scoring record this year — as Iowa fell short in the national championship to coach Dawn Staley and the unbeaten South Carolina Gamecocks. The Hawkeyes were runners-up in each of the last two seasons.

Assuming Clark is selected by the Fever at No. 1, and there are few surer bets, she will team up with Aliyah Boston, last season's WNBA Rookie of the Year.