Caitlin Clark says playing in Olympics a ‘dream,’ will go to USA Basketball camp if Iowa misses Final Four

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Caitlin Clark told reporters on Friday ahead of Iowa’s Sweet 16 game against Colorado that playing in the Olympics is a “dream,” and she will attend the upcoming USA Basketball training camp if Iowa does not make the Final Four. Given the circumstances, it’s understandable that she would like it to be a training camp that she must miss. 

Earlier this week, USA Basketball announced the 14-player roster for the camp, which is set to take place April 3-5 in Cleveland, the same city that will host the Final Four April 5-7. Clark earned the call-up for the first time in her career, and is the only collegiate player in the group. 

“USA Basketball, that’s your dream,” Clark said during a press conference on Friday. “You always want to grow up and be on the Olympic team. Lucky for me I have the opportunity to possibly not doing that because I want to be at the Final Four playing basketball with my team. But if not, that’s where I’ll be. People that are on that roster are people that I idolize and have idolized growing up. So just to be extended a camp invite is something you have to be proud of and celebrate and enjoy. 

“More than anything, my focus is on winning these two games, and that’s exactly how it should be. I don’t talk about those things with really anybody. I have other people that deal with it and they haven’t said a word to me about it. My main focus is on this team and helping us find a way to beat Colorado and hopefully win another one after that.”

Iowa is set to play Colorado on Saturday in the Sweet 16, and a win would send them to the Elite Eight on Monday against either UCLA or LSU. If Iowa wins both of those games, they would reach the Final Four for a second consecutive season, and the third time in program history. Clark led the Hawkeyes to the national championship game last season, but fell short against LSU. This time, in her final collegiate season before she departs for the WNBA, she hopes to take her team all the way. 

Regardless of whether she takes part in this upcoming training camp, Clark, who is projected to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 WNBA Draft on April 15, will likely be in contention to make Team USA’s final roster for the Olympics in Paris this summer. If she does end up making the Olympic team, she will be the first rookie to do so since Breanna Stewart in 2016. 

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