Iowa retiring Caitlin Clark’s No. 22 after record-breaking career

Caitlin Clark will be the last women’s basketball player to wear No. 22 at the University of Iowa.

During Wednesday’s celebration of the Hawkeyes’ second straight national title game, athletic director Beth Goetz retired Clark’s jersey number, making her the third woman in history to have her number hung from the rafters. He announced that he would become a basketball player.

“I would like to add one more thing today. [honor]Goetz told Clark while addressing fans during the ceremony. “We always knew that one day your jersey would be hung in the rafters, almost as sure as the shot from the Caitlin logo would fall into the net to the roar of this excited Carver crowd.” It’s an honor for me to now officially announce it: You will be the last person to wear number 22.”

This latest honor is a fitting end to Clark’s time with the Hawkeyes, where she helped effectively change the future of women’s basketball.

Caitlin Clark looked disappointed as the University of Iowa lost to the University of South Carolina in the NCAA women’s tournament final. Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Clark broke nearly every record in the sport, breaking the Division I record 45 times, and propelling the women’s game to unprecedented viewership.

Her historic 2023-24 season saw her finish her collegiate career with 3,951 points, the most of any Division I men’s or women’s player.

“It’s super incredible. I’m so grateful,” Clark said of the honor. “Obviously I’ve had great teammates in my four years here. A lot of really good 22-year-olds that came before me and played in this program, whether it’s Kathleen Doyle or Sam Rozi. This number carries far more weight than my name, and I’m really grateful for it, and it will be a special day if it happens.”

Wednesday was the Hawkeyes’ last chance to say goodbye to Clark, who is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick in next week’s WNBA Draft in Brooklyn.

Iowa State will retire Caitlin Clark's jersey number.
Iowa State will retire Caitlin Clark’s jersey number. Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Clark received a huge ovation all night and stayed afterward to sign autographs for fans who showed up at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

“As much as I have inspired you, you guys have inspired me and allowed me to make my dreams come true every day. For that, I am forever grateful. ” Clark told the crowd.

Now in the professional ranks, Clark is expected to add excitement to the WNBA, and the league is already making plans to capitalize on her addition.

The Indiana Fever owns the No. 1 overall pick, and on Wednesday, the WNBA announced its 2024 streaming and television schedule with emphasis on the Fever, who are expected to take Clark.

The Fever will have 36 of the 40 games featured on either national television or one of the league’s streaming partners.