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Iowa's Caitlin Clark says only LSU should visit White House: "I don't think runner-ups usually go to the White House"

Iowa Hawkeyes star Caitlin Clark shut down first lady Jill Biden's suggestion that her team should visit the White House alongside nation champions LSU after her team's defeat in the NCAA women's basketball final on Sunday. 

Biden, who attended the final, suggested Monday that Iowa should join LSU during the championship team's traditional visit to the White House.

"I know we'll have the champions come to the White House, we always do. So, we hope LSU will come," she said. "But, you know, I'm going to tell Joe, I think Iowa should come, too, because they played such a good game."

When asked about Biden's suggestion during a Tuesday appearance on "SportsCenter," Clark told ESPN's Jeremy Schaap that she appreciated Biden supporting woman's basketball, but said she thinks LSU should get their moment in the sun following their victory. 

"I don't think runner-ups usually go to the White House," she said. "LSU should enjoy that moment for them. And congratulations, obviously; they deserve to go there. Maybe I could go to the White House on different terms though."

"That's for LSU they should enjoy every single second of being the champion," she added. "I think that's theirs to do." 

The first lady's suggestion did not go over well with LSU's Angel Reese, who tweeted a link to a story about Biden's remarks with the caption: "A JOKE," with laughing emojis.

Clark in her interview on ESPN also defended Reese, whose taunts during Sunday's game caused a stir on social media

LSU v Iowa
Angel Reese #10 of the LSU Lady Tigers reacts towards Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes during the fourth quarter during the 2023 NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament championship game at American Airlines Center on April 02, 2023 in Dallas, Texas. Getty Images

"I don't think Angel should be criticized at all," Clark said. "I'm just one that competes, and she competed. I think everybody knew there was gonna be a little trash talk in the entire tournament. It's not just me and Angel."

After some pushback, the first lady's press secretary, Vanessa Valdivia, walked back the remarks about having both teams visit the White House, saying Tuesday that Biden was simply "applauding" women athletes. 

"The First Lady loved watching the NCAA women's basketball championship game alongside young student athletes and admires how far women have advanced in sports since the passing of Title IX," Valdivia tweeted

"Her comments in Colorado were intended to applaud the historic game and all women athletes. She looks forward to celebrating the LSU Tigers on their championship win at the White House," she added. 

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