Covino & Rich

Covino & Rich

Widely-popular broadcast duo Steve Covino and Rich Davis feature their unique take on the hot sports topics of the day, injected with their brand of...Full Bio


Caitlin Clark is Not Likeable or Marketable Enough to Maintain Her Stardom

Rich Davis: “For as fun as it’s been to watch Caitlin Clark’s journey in college women’s hoops, do you think she’ll just fade into a little bit of obscurity for the Indiana Fever? The WNBA, who’s never had a million people watch a game, and all the sudden Caitlin Clark will bring that on a team who got the first pick?” 

Steve Covino: “The Big3 and Ice Cube offered her $5 million, but then Dave Portnoy of Barstool said ‘well, screw that, I’ll give you $10 million to play in our intramural league.’ Lil Durk offered her $10 million to do some nonsense. She needs to get what she can get right now while the iron is hot, but here’s why... The Indiana Fever is only going to be so hot for so long before people lose interest, and I don’t find Caitlin Clark – for as lights out as she is, as awesome as she is, and as important as she is to women’s sports – she's not just that marketable.” 

Davis: “She doesn’t have the charisma of like a Shaquille O’Neal or some young star.” 

Covino: “Just like pure dominance on the court, I don’t find her to be that likeable, and as a guy with a marketing background, I’m going to tell you that does matter. There’s a reason Shaquille O’Neal is Shaquille O’Neal, because not only was he great on the court, he was great off the court. I don’t think Caitlin Clark is that person. I’d love for her to prove me wrong. I know it doesn’t matter when she’s on the court, but when you’re going to be the face of something big, you need to be marketable, and I’m not sure she is. I know it doesn’t matter what I think but I personally don’t find her to be that likeable yet. Mike Trout is arguably the greatest player in baseball, but he’s boring and he’s not that likeable. He’s not ‘hateable’, but he’s not that likeable either. Women’s basketball on the professional level is not that popular. She has to figure out a way to make her money and be as marketable as she can, when she can, and while she can, and that time is now.” 

Davis: “Caitlin Clark is going to be on a bad team in the WNBA and what’s going to happen? They’ll be alright and she’ll have her moments, but will she ever be as popular in the WNBA as she is right now for Iowa? NO.” 

Covino: “I’d love for her to prove me wrong and be that person. I feel bad saying what I’m saying because she’s the world’s sweetheart right now, so I’m not hating I’m just stating, and that’s just my personal opinion. The NBA, which backs the WNBA, will figure out a way to keep her and make sure she’s paid to be that person. They’re not going to want to lose her to the Big3, Dave Portnoy, or anybody else.” 

Watch Steve Covino of Fox Sports Radio’s Overpromised with Covino & Rich explain why he doesn’t think Iowa women’s basketball star Caitlin Clark will be ‘likeable’ or ‘marketable’ enough to sustain her meteoric rise to fame in the financially strapped and culturally insignificant WNBA when her college career is over. 

Monday night’s Elite Eight matchup between Clark’s Hawkeyes and LSU, a rematch of last season’s National Championship game, was the most-watched women’s college basketball game ever, and was the most watched basketball game on ESPN, men’s or women’s, since 2018. More than 12 million people tuned in to see the encore of the Clark vs. Angel Reese rivalry, with a peak audience reaching 16.1 million viewers. That was a higher total than any World Series, Stanley Cup, or NBA Finals game last season. 

However, despite the immense attention Clark has brought the college game, Covino has his doubts to whether Clark can carryover her starpower to a WNBA that has struggled financially since its inception in 1996. The league’s highest-paid player makes just a shade over $250,000 a year, WNBA teams flew non-chartered commercial flights to games up until last year, and even NBA commissioner Adam Silver once admitted that the WNBA, fully subsidized by the NBA, was losing $10 million per season and struggling to capture the attention of female fans.

Check out the segment above as Covino is worried that Clark could become the WNBA’s version of 'boring' MLB superstar Mike Trout, as an otherworldly talent who isn’t interesting or charismatic enough off the field to captivate a fledgling WNBA audience that won’t have the charm and pageantry of college basketball to fall back on. 

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