Caitlin Clark & Iowa Going To The Natty Is Best For Women’s Basketball, But That UConn Offensive Foul WAS Highly Questionable

Caitlin Clark Iowa

What just happened? As if Caitlin Clark’s electrifying 41-point performance to knock off LSU in the Elite Eight didn’t live up to the hype enough! Clark had a cold start and needed her Iowa teammates to pick her up, and that they did in an absolutely thrilling 71-69 win over the UConn Huskies.

First of all, let’s credit the Hawkeyes for rallying from as many as 12 points down in the first half to cut UConn’s lead to 32-26 at halftime. They could’ve folded like a cheap suit when Clark bricked her first six 3-pointers, but instead, Iowa rallied around their transcendent superstar, capitalized on a lot of the seven assists she set up, and got 23 points from forward Hannah Stuelke and 11 from Kate Martin. Hell of a job all around.

Unfortunately, that extraordinary effort will be overshadowed somewhat by some dubious officiating down the stretch. Stuelke coughed up the ball on a possession where Iowa could’ve iced the game. Instead, the turnover gave the Huskies a chance at the final shot. Aaliyah Edwards set a screen to hopefully set up a game-winner, only to be whistled for an offensive foul with only about four seconds remaining.

How wild is it that ESPN has UConn legends reacting in real time to the controversy? Amazing live theatre.

That is tough. I will admit that. You generally want the players to decide the outcome of the game if you can help it. A whistle shouldn’t be the deciding factor. Except when Caitlin Clark going to the national championship game is in jeopardy, that is.

Wait, did I type that out loud? Sorry. I’m simping for this Hawkeyes squad. I’m not afraid to say it. I was born in Connecticut. I don’t give a f*ck.

Am I really about to feel bad for the UConn Huskies women’s basketball program? Think about it this way. How about UConn coach Geno Auriemma, who famously never attended the open gyms of Caitlin Clark when she was preparing to make her college decision. We’re talking about a man who has led the Huskies to eleven national championships. Eleven. And oh by the way, a cool twenty-three Final Four appearances. Clark dreamed of going there like so many other girls. Wasn’t meant to be. Meanwhile, the Huskies continued to roll, as Clark toiled away to build Iowa into a powerhouse.

Coach Geno was on Madden Rookie Mode for two decades. Shooting fish in a barrel. Whatever metaphor, analogy, idiom, or figure of speech you’d like to use to articulate the dynamic. I credit him for being a great leader of women, a strong coach, and an excellent recruiter. But come on. I won’t lose a wink of sleep over this questionable call. Auriemma built a ruthless dynasty that has reigned supreme for more than two decades, and until very recently, the talent advantage he had over 99% of his opponents was laughable.

Then Caitlin Clark happened. And it’s awesome. And if you don’t think so, you’re either a Huskies fan, or you’re a complete and utter killjoy. And even then, you’d still have to admit, this is all at least 1% awesome. And if you can’t acknowledge that, well…

tommy lee jones

But oh well. The Internets will be the Internets. Cry about it, complain away, and shout, “CONSPIRACY!” from the rooftops till your lungs give out, y’all! I’ll have my popcorn ready on Sunday night for when Clark aims to femme-splain/confirm her greatness to Jay Williams against South Carolina for all the damn marbles.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock