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ESPN’s Caitlin Clark-Led Docuseries Gives Fans an Inside Look

May 12th, 2024

ESPN+ is diving into the backgrounds of women’s basketball stars Caitlin Clark, Kamilla Cardoso and Kiki Rice in a four-part docuseries called Full Court Press. The series, which follows their 2023-24 college seasons at Iowa (Clark), South Carolina (Cardoso) and UCLA (Rice) and the aftermath, debuts Saturday on ABC.

Peyton Manning’s Omaha Productions and Words & Pictures spearheaded the series and partnered with ESPN+. Clark—who is managed by Excel Sports Management, the same as Manning—revealed at last month’s WNBA Draft that she is an executive producer of the docuseries.

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Clark and Cardoso were both top-three picks in the draft after meeting in the 2024 national championship game, while Rice is coming off her sophomore year with the Bruins. The trio were among the biggest names in a women’s college basketball season that set viewership records, with two-time National Player of the Year Clark leading the way.

Full Court Press’ episodes dive into Clark’s family life, her love for Des Moines, Iowa, and how she almost went to Notre Dame. They also give insight into how Clark feels about shouldering the responsibility of growing the sport of women’s basketball.

“I think [the series] showcases a lot of things the normal fan doesn’t get to see … it kind of goes more into your why and why you play basketball and what it really means to you,” Clark told reporters Thursday ahead of an Indiana Fever preseason game.

The series interviews important people in Clark’s life on and off the court, including her teammates, family, friends, ESPN reporters and more.

Clark’s senior year at Iowa began by hosting DePaul in an exhibition in front of 55,646 people at the Hawkeyes’ football stadium. That milestone crowd for a women’s basketball event was the first of many records to go down in 2023-24, with Clark rewriting the history books as she scored the most points in a women’s single season (1,234) and set the all-time mark for points in a men’s or women’s Division I college basketball career (3,951).

As her college career reached a crescendo, viewers followed, with the Iowa-South Carolina title game featuring Clark and Cardoso garnering an audience of 18.7 million and outdrawing the men’s final for the first time.

South Carolina beat the Hawkeyes to finish the 2023-24 season undefeated and win the program’s third NCAA title. But the wins didn’t come without struggles and pressure for Cardoso, the face of the program. The series touches on how being away from her family in Brazil was one of the biggest challenges of Cardoso’s career, and it shows how South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley discovered Cardoso and molded her into a starter.

Rice, meanwhile, was the first college athlete, male or female, to have an NIL deal with Jordan Brand. The episodes look at her growing up in a family that bleeds basketball, and they show her navigating the business world.

“The way this year has unfolded … you can’t script it any better,” Clark said, after being picked first at the WNBA Draft by the Fever. “I’m excited for everybody to see it, and it’s been a special project.”

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