Iowa’s Caitlin Clark will be first college athlete on ManningCast

Iowa superstar Caitlin Clark, widely considered college basketball’s sweetheart, will appear on the ManningCast Monday night during the Chiefs-Eagles game to talk college hoops with brothers Peyton and Eli Manning. Clark will be the first college athlete they’ve ever had on.

Clark is a lifelong Chiefs fan (her family has a Chiefs vending machine in their Des Moines home) and has developed a friendship with Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes via Twitter; Mahomes is also a big fan of Clark’s and has told her he wants to watch Iowa play in person. She has seen him in person, having secured tickets to the Chiefs’ Christmas Eve 2022 game.

Former NFL quarterback Michael Vick, who played the majority of his career with Atlanta and Philadelphia, will also be a guest Monday. The ManningCast starts at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

Known for her logo 3s and thread-the-needle transition passes, Clark became Iowa’s all-time leading scorer on Nov. 12 after notching her 12th career triple double. After leading the Hawkeyes to the Final Four she’s back for her senior season, with the option to return for a fifth year. Iowa, ranked No. 2 this week in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll, had an impressive early season win over No. 9 Virginia Tech, but fell last week to unranked Kansas State. It’s the first time in Clark’s career the Hawkeyes were held under 60 points. 

The ManningCast has been a hit since it debuted on ESPN2 in 2021. The brothers frequently entertain some of the world’s most accomplished and popular sports figures; LeBron James, Tom Brady, Steph Curry, Sue Bird and Charles Barkley have been guests. They’ve also hosted former president Barack Obama, comedian Jon Stewart and actor Jon Hamm, among others.  

Clark is a frequent topic, and occasional guest, on some of sports media’s biggest shows. Last season she told Dan Patrick she might come back for a fifth year, delaying her professional career until 2025. Stephen A. Smith has praised her as “a sensational talent” and asked if he should call her “the female version of Steph Curry, or do I need to call Steph Curry the male version of Caitlin Clark?” (Clark and Smith also did an event together earlier this fall during Iowa’s homecoming celebration.) 

After Clark and Iowa’s Elite Eight game vs. Louisville drew more than 2.5 million viewers, Dan Le Batard said Clark’s popularity could help “change the power imbalance of sports.”

This post appeared first on USA TODAY