Syndication: The Indianapolis Star

Caitlin Clark opens up on the difficult side of superstardom

NCAA superstar Caitlin Clark, who has now joined the Indiana Fever WNBA team, is one of the biggest basketball stars in America. During her time with the University of Iowa, Clark gained widespread fame for her stellar play. Last season, she made it all the way to the NCAA Finals, where, although Iowa lost to LSU, she earned tons of admiration from fans.

This season, while Caitlin Clark and the Iowa Hawkeyes came up short in the NCAA Finals, she was selected first in the WNBA draft. The rise in popularity from her time in the NCAA, to her recent signing with Nike and the Indiana Fever, has taken Clark to new heights.

In an ESPN four-part series titled full Court Press, which is set to premiere on May 11 and May 12 on ABC and ESPN+, Caitlin Clark spoke about fame. As she indicated, being one of the most recognizable athletes in America comes with some challenges.

“Hardest part about being Caitlin Clark, having to feel like you’re always on. You just have bad days and there’s days that you don’t wanna talk to anyone, but somebody comes up to you and this is there 10 second interaction with you so you better smile and be kind.

“But at the same time you just want to be normal sometimes,”

The footage shows Clark out to eat with her boyfriend, where she winds up interacting with a number of fans and posing for photos. At one point in the clip, Clark’s breakfast meal was interrupted by a fan, highlighting the fact that the young star rarely ever gets a moment to rest.

Looking at the Caitlin Clark effect and how the young star’s presence has already made an impact on the league

While Caitlin Clark has yet to compete in a regular season game for the WNBA, her presence is already being felt around the league. When it was confirmed that Clark would in fact be declaring for the draft, ticket prices for Indiana Fever games began to skyrocket.

Around the same time, the WNBA released the Fever’s regular season schedule, including broadcasting information for games. Of the 40 regular-season games the Fever are scheduled to play this year, 36 of them will be nationally televised.

These two situations then led to teams beginning to explore the possibility of using a larger arena when Clark and the Fever come to town in order to accommodate more fans. Moreover, Clark’s popularity has also pushed the WNBA to change their stance on chartered flights.

After footage of Clark signing a few autographs for fans at a recent Indiana Pacers game went viral, many pointed out that flying commercial would be difficult. With her popularity, fans would likely mob the young star at airports.

Before the start of the season, commissioner Cathy Engelbert indicated that the league was getting things in place for chartered flights around the league. Moreover, the expectation is that the league will garner significantly more money from their next broadcasting rights deal thanks to the surge in WNBA popularity.

With Caitlin Clark and a few other NCAA stars set to take the league by storm, the sky seems to be the limit for the W.