Hot off a Big Ten Tournament title, and with a gaggle of returning players, the Iowa Hawkeye women's basketball team has emerged an early favorite to win the tournament for the 2022-23 season yet again.

The Iowa women were selected No. 1 in the Preseason Big Ten Coaches and Media polls, which is comprised of 14 head coaches and a select media panel. The committee also named Iowa junior guard Caitlin Clark as the 2022-23 Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year, the second consecutive year Clark has received the designation.

The Hawkeye women are coming off an amazing run last year, which culminated in a Big Ten Tournament title, their second in three seasons and third overall under head coach Lisa Bluder.

Iowa Hawkeye women's basketball head coach Lisa Bluder. Photo Credit, Carmen Mandato, Getty Images
Iowa Hawkeye women's basketball head coach Lisa Bluder. Photo Credit, Carmen Mandato, Getty Images

Not only did Iowa earn the No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament last year, but the individual success of many of the program's players was abundantly clear. Clark led the league in points per game (27.0), assists (8.0), and final points (863), just to name a few stats. She was crowned Big Ten Player of the Year and was a Naismith and Wooden Award finalist in 2021.

Monika Czinano also returns to the Hawkeyes for her fifth-year following a sterling performance during Iowa's championship run. Czinano led the country in field-goal percentage (.679) and ranked sixth in field goals made (277) and 11th in total points for the season (656). All of that was good enough for her to be named a semifinalist for the Lisa Leslie Center of the Year and an honorable mention for the Associated Press and Women’s Basketball Coaches Association All-America.

While the Iowa Hawkeye women's basketball team topped the Big Ten Preseason Rankings, Ohio State, Indiana, Maryland, and Michigan rounded out the top five, respectively. Clark and Czinano are in the company of other standout athletes, such as Ohio State's Taylor Mikesell and Indiana's Gracie Berger, on the Preseason All-Big Ten Team.

Preseason practices for all 14 Big Ten schools are underway at the moment, with media days set for October 11th and 12th. The 2022-23 regular season tips off on November 7th, with the Big Ten Conference Women's Basketball Tournament taking place March 1st-5th. The 20223 NCAA Women's Final Four is scheduled for March 31st and April 2nd at American Airlines Arena in Dallas, TX.

View the Iowa Hawkeye women's basketball schedule here!

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