Caitlin Clark fired back after 1-on-1 remark, former Iowa star football player says

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Cooper DeJean, a former Iowa football standout and current Philadelphia Eagles draft pick, provided an update on his challenge to Caitlin Clark on the basketball court on Wednesday.

Before the NFL Draft, DeJean said he could likely beat Clark one-on-one if the two ever met on the basketball court. DeJean was a standout high school basketball player in Iowa but chose to go the football route over the sport, and it eventually landed him in the NFL.

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Cooper DeJean vs Michigan State

Defensive back Cooper DeJean, #3 of the Iowa Hawkeyes, runs off the field after the match-up against the Michigan State Spartans at Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 30, 2023 in Iowa City, Iowa. (Matthew Holst/Getty Images)

DeJean said he thought he could “pull off” a win over Clark on the court. He then shared that Clark texted him after those remarks.

“I mean, I was really just answering the question, but obviously, you know, Caitlin’s a special player,” he told Kay Adams on her show “Up and Adams.” “She’s done so much for women’s basketball as well and the University of Iowa in general. So I’ve had nothing but respect for her. 

“She took a shot back at me after she texted me, and she said didn’t think that I could beat her. I’ll let her say that, but yeah, I mean, I think it’d be fun though if we got to play each other.”

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Caitlin Clark reacts

Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark, #22, reacts after scoring during the first quarter against the Dallas Wings at College Park Center in Dallas on May 3, 2024. (Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports)

Adams did not think DeJean could do it. However, when they played his highlights, he asserted he had some skills. He admitted, though, there was no date set for the potential one-on-one matchup.

He was a three-year varsity basketball player while attending OABCIG High School in Ida Grove, Iowa, scoring 1,832 points. That is 45 more points than NBA player Harrison Barnes scored in Iowa during his career (but 55 behind Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson).

Clark ended her career at Iowa as the all-time leading scorer in Division 1 college basketball.

Cooper DeJean vs Rutgers

Iowa Hawkeyes cornerback Cooper DeJean, #3, as seen during a college football game between the Rutgers Scarlet Knights and the Iowa Hawkeyes on Nov. 11, 2023 at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa. (Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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The Indiana Fever selected her with the No. 1 pick of the 2024 WNBA Draft last month. She is less than a week away from her regular-season debut.

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