Caitlin Clark sweeps Naismith and AP Player of the Year accolades
The GIST: Awards season didn’t end with the Oscars — college basketball’s best are racking up some serious hardware, with the ultra-prestigious Naismith and AP Player of the Year (POY) and Coach of the Year (COY) women’s trophies being handed out this week.
- The men’s winners won’t be announced until Sunday, but the MVPs of the women’s season are already celebrating. As for the Final Four games, we’ll leave it to special editions today and tomorrow to break them down for you.
POY: None other than Caitlin Clark, of course. The No. 2 Iowa guard has posted monster numbers all season, earning her the Naismith and AP titles. Her mind-boggling buckets from way downtown and league-leading dimes are must-see TV, and if you didn’t cry watching her find out she won, you’re lying.
- Clark beat out No. 1 South Carolina’s Aliyah Boston, last year’s POY and this year’s Defensive POY, for the awards, making their matchup at 9 p.m. ET tonight the most anticipated game of the season. Chills.
COY: Speaking of South Carolina, their HC, the legendary Dawn Staley, won her second consecutive Naismith COY award for leading her squad to a still-undefeated season and creating a verified Gamecocks dynasty. A fierce advocate for the women’s game, her coaching is even better than her dancing and her ’fits.
- However, Coach Staley is sharing the spotlight with Indiana HC Teri Moren, whose record-setting season won her the AP award. Although her top-seeded Hoosiers were upset in the second round, they did win second-cutest reveal video.
The men: The four men’s POY finalists and the four men’s COY contenders all recorded dazzling campaigns — but you won’t see a single one of them in the Final Four tomorrow. In fact, only POY candidate Drew Timme of No. 3 Gonzaga and COY candidate Jerome Tang of No. 3 Kansas State even made the Elite Eight. Guess MJ was right.