Kansas Jayhawks women’s basketball great sparks controversy over Caitlin Clark comments

The KU legend says she is still the all-time leading scorer
Ohio State v Iowa
Ohio State v Iowa / Matthew Holst/GettyImages

Lynette Woodard was an unsung hero in the game of women's college basketball before her name began to surface again this year.

For over 40 years, Woodard held the women's basketball all-time scoring record with 3,649 points. However, the NCAA did not recognize her record because she played during the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW), which dissolved two years after she finished her career at KU.

But now, Iowa superstar Caitlin Clark finished her career with 3,951 points, surpassing Woodard's record in February. She recently wrapped up her collegiate career with a loss to South Carolina in the National Championship game.

Clark is one of the most exciting and talked about women's college basketball players. However, she is also a polarizing figure. Before the game during the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association convention, Woodard spoke about the woman who broke her scoring record.

"I am the hidden figure, but no longer now. My record was hidden from everyone for 43 years. I don't think... I'll just go ahead and get the elephant out of the room. I don't think my record has been broken because you can't duplicate what you're not duplicating. So unless you come with a men's basketball and a two-point shot, you know..."

Lynette Woodard

The comments raised some eyebrows, especially because Iowa honored Woodard before Clark broke her record. Hawkeyes HC Lisa Bluder even recognized her record a few months ago, saying she was the true all-time points leader. Many perceived Woodard's words as backhanded or structured in a way to discredit Clark's achievements, and it certainly appears that way on the surface.

Woodard later backtracked her comments in a statement, claiming she did not have any ill will toward Clark when she said that.

"To clarify my remarks made at an awards ceremony on Saturday, no one respects Caitlin Clark’s accomplishments more than I do. This is why I accepted Iowa’s invitation to participate in Caitlin’s senior day. My message was: A lot has changed, on and off the court, which makes it difficult to compare statistical accomplishments from different eras. Each is a snapshot in time."

Lynette Woodard