What's next for Caitlin Clark? Her college career is over, but Iowa star has busy months ahead

CLEVELAND — What’s next for CC?

Caitlin Clark’s brilliant, record-breaking collegiate career has come to an end. The Iowa star, a two-time national player of the year, and the Hawkeyes fell in the national championship game for the second consecutive year as South Carolina capped a perfect season.

Clark, a logo shooting supernova who captured the hearts and eyes of millions over the past couple seasons while re-writing the scoring record books, will go down as one of the most transcendent stars in all of sports, at all of 22 years old. In a state with a deep history of hoops known for producing stellar women's basketball players, Clark stands above the rest.

So what’s next for the Des Moines native? Plenty. And it’s going to be a whirlwind three weeks.

First up, Clark is projected as the No. 1 pick of the 2024 WNBA Draft, which takes place April 15 in New York. The Indiana Fever have the top pick, and are expected to take Clark and pair her with 2023’s top pick, Aliyah Boston. Boston, a South Carolina standout, was a 2023 WNBA All-Star who averaged 14.5 points and 8.4 rebounds. She’s a force in the paint, and will be the recipient of many Clark passes.

Caitlin Clark will likely be the first pick in this year's WNBA draft.
Caitlin Clark will likely be the first pick in this year's WNBA draft.

WNBA training camps open April 28, and the Fever’s preseason games are scheduled for May 3 at Dallas and May 10 vs. Atlanta in Indianapolis. The WNBA season officially tips May 14 with the Fever visiting the Sun. It’s likely that so-called "Clarkonomics" will spread to the pros, and the Fever will sell out their first game, if not all of their home games.

Indiana will play 26 games before the Olympic break begins July 21. The pause for the Paris Games runs through Aug. 14.

Will Clark be busy during that period?

Though she’s missing USA Basketball’s last training camp — it took place this week, while Clark was still with Iowa — she could still be put on the roster. The Americans are going for their seventh consecutive gold medal, and are the favorites going into Paris. Putting Clark on the Olympic team would certainly increase viewership.

Olympic team or not, many — including four-time WNBA champion Sue Bird — believe Clark will make the WNBA All-Star team in her rookie season. The WNBA All-Stars are scheduled to play an exhibition against the Olympic team July 20.

Clark has enough major endorsement deals that will travel with her to the pros that she’s not expected to play overseas in the winter, which many WNBA players do to supplement their income. (As a rookie, Clark will be able to earn a max salary of $76,535, but she’ll be eligible for incentives, including bonuses related to winning the Commissioner’s Cup.)

All told, it’s going to be a very busy few months.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Caitlin Clark future: What's next for Iowa star after title game?