Caitlin Clark Lands Historic $28 Million Shoe Deal with Nike That Includes Signature Shoe: Reports

Clark's deal is reportedly for $28 million over eight years, which would make it the largest-ever for a WNBA player

<p>Andy Lyons/Getty</p> Caitlin Clark

Andy Lyons/Getty

Caitlin Clark

Caitlin Clark is soon expected to sign her first major sponsorship as a professional women’s basketball player, according to several reports.

The Wall Street Journal and the Athletic said Tuesday that Clark, 22, is on track to ink a $28 million endorsement deal with Nike that will span over the next eight years.

Clark is expected to receive a signature shoe in the brand’s catalog, according to the Athletic, which also reports the Indiana Fever star’s deal carries potential bonuses.

Nike first began working with Clark in 2022, during her time in college at the University of Iowa under the NCAA’s “Name, Image, and Likeness” opportunities.

"I grew up watching Nike athletes across all sports play their game," Clark said in a statement at the time she signed that deal, according to Fox Sports. "They have inspired me to work hard and make a difference. I’m humbled to be part of this first Nike basketball class and passionate about inspiring the next."

Related: President Joe Biden Comments on Caitlin Clark's WNBA Salary, Says 'Women Are Not Paid Their Fair Share' 

<p>Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty</p> Caitlin Clark

Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty

Caitlin Clark

Clark comes into the WNBA already having worked with brands like Gatorade, State Farm, Buick, Bose and more.

Only three other WNBA players have shoe deals, according to USA Today: Breanna Stewart has a line with Puma, while Elena Delle Donne and Sabrina Ionescu also have deals with Nike. (Ionescu’s original deal signed in 2020 was worth $24 million, according to the outlet.)

Related: Caitlin Clark Says Her Goal Is to Join Team USA at Paris Olympics: ‘It’s Where I Want to Be’

<p>Ben Solomon/NCAA Photos via Getty</p> Caitlin Clark

Ben Solomon/NCAA Photos via Getty

Caitlin Clark

News of Clark’s lucrative endorsement deal with Nike comes just weeks after discourse over her relatively meager WNBA salary swept the sports world. Clark, who was picked No. 1 overall in this month’s WNBA Draft, is expected to make a total of $338,056 in her first four years in the league. That’s compared with the NBA’s most recent No. 1 overall draft pick, Victor Wembanyama, who is expected to earn $55.7 million in his first four years in the men’s professional basketball league.

The stark difference in WNBA and NBA players’ salaries drew input on social media from other athletes, celebrities, fans, and even President Joe Biden in recent weeks.

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"These ladies deserve so much more…Praying for the day," Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Russell Wilson wrote in one post on X. Oscar winner Jamie Lee Curtis wrote that Clark’s relatively small contract was "outrageous” in another post.

Related: Caitlin Clark Selected First Overall by Indiana Fever During 2024 WNBA Draft

<p>Steph Chambers/Getty</p> Caitlin Clark

Steph Chambers/Getty

Caitlin Clark

Clark is expected to make a significant amount more in endorsement deals than she is via her WNBA contract, as exemplified by this week’s news of a $28 million Nike deal.

But the expected increase in endorsement deals coming Clark’s way hasn’t phased the WNBA star, who spoke out about her expected income during the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament’s Final Four earlier this month.

“If I’m being completely honest, I feel like it doesn’t change a ton from how I lived my life over the course of the last year,” Clark said, according to the Athletic. “Sponsorships stay the same. The people around me, agents and whatnot, have been able to help me and guide me through the course of the last year. I don’t know if I would be in this moment if it wasn’t for a lot of them.”

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