Caitlin Clark splits Sporting News Athlete of the Year award with Angel Reese

Clark was named the Sporting News Athlete of the Year earlier this week, but she’s not alone. Instead, the Hawkeye superstar will share the award with LSU star Angel Reese, who went toe-to-toe with Clark in last season’s NCAA Tournament title game, which LSU won 102-85.

Clark led all scorers in the title game with 30 points on 9-for-22 shooting. Reese was the game’s leading rebounder with 10, to go along with 15 points, five assists and three steals. Reese averaged more than 21 points and 15 rebounds per game for the entire NCAA Tournament.

Clark and Reese made national headlines during and after the game, as controversial fouls put both stars on the bench for periods of the game before Reese’s celebration in front of Clark in the game’s waning moments went viral.

The controversy from the game was only exacerbated by an NCAA review of the officiating crew’s struggles and an invitation from the White House extended to both LSU and Iowa.

Now, this Sporting News award will add to the list of ties between Clark and Reese. This is the first time since Marshall Faulk and Kurt Warner won the award in 2000 that it has been split between two players, and the first time since Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa in 1998 that it has been split between two non-teammates.