NewsNCAA Debate Over Veteran Black Players Overlooked

NCAA Debate Over Veteran Black Players Overlooked

High scorers and record setters Lynette Woodard and Pearl Moore are two women the NCAA left behind.

Caitlin Clark broke the NCAA All-Time scoring record on Feb.15, following a 49-point outburst that also set her career high and while the fanfare around Clark’s record-setting achievement has propelled her into conversations about if her scoring prowess will immediately transfer to the women’s professional game, it is also creating conversations about the women the NCAA left behind.

Following her incredible college career, Woodard became a two-time Olympian, winning a gold medal in 1984 as the captain  alongside Cheryl Miller, Pamela McGee, and Kim Mulkey. Woodard also became the first woman to play for the Harlem Globetrotters and then played basketball professionally overseas, like McGee and Miller’s college teammate, Cynthia Cooper, before eventually joining the WNBA. Woodard told NPR via a written statement that while she celebrated Clark’s record, she hoped others could have their records honored also.

“In honoring Caitlin’s accomplishments, I hope that we can also shine a light on the pioneers who paved the way before her. Women’s basketball has a glorious history that predates the NCAA’s involvement. I applaud Caitlin for everything she has done and look forward to watching her score many more points for years to come,” Woodard wrote.

Moore’s record is more obscure but is perhaps also lifted by a recent NCAA record set by Lauryn Taylor. Taylor, who currently plays for Francis Marion College, pulled down 44 rebounds on Feb 15, the same day Clark set her record. Over Moore’s career, she was a four-time Small College All-American who went on to play for two teams, the New York Stars and the St. Louis Streak, which played in a league that was a forerunner to the WNBA, the Women’s Professional Basketball League.

Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer, who is the coach with the most wins in NCAA history in either the men or women’s programs, told The Wall Street Journal that she believes that the record belongs to Woodard until it is broken. “I think the overall record by Lynette Woodard is THE RECORD.”

So, for now, the records will all have separate descriptions and qualifiers. Still, the benefit to those conversations is that these forgotten scoring geniuses’ names will keep coming up while Clark’s record is discussed.

RELATED CONTENT: Angel Reese Shares ‘Athlete of the Year’ Cover With Caitlin Clark And Social Media Wonders Why

Source: Black Enterprise

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