Columnist's Cringey Exchange With Caitlin Clark Leads To Cringey Apologies

Gregg Doyel of The Indianapolis Star dug himself a hole after his press room awkwardness with the WNBA's No. 1 draft pick.

Indianapolis Star columnist Gregg Doyel made a heart gesture at Indiana Fever rookie Caitlin Clark on Wednesday at a news conference to begin an icky exchange with the WNBA’s top draft pick.

“You like that?” Clark said, referring to Doyel’s imitation of her signature heart greeting.

“I like that you’re here,” Doyel said.

“I do that with my family after every game,” Clark noted.

“Start doing it to me and we’ll get along just fine,” Doyel replied.

Yikes. Ugh. Sigh.

Clark, who became the NCAA’s all-time scorer at Iowa and was the No. 1 pick Monday night during the WNBA draft, may have just received her first major dose of sexism as a pro.

Doyel issued multiple apologies afterward. On X, formerly Twitter, he called his heart gesture “uniquely oafish” and comment “clumsy and awkward.”

“Please know my heart (literally and figuratively) was well-intentioned. I will do better,” he wrote.

“I’m devastated to realize I’m part of the problem,” he then wrote in a column published later in the day. “I screwed up Wednesday during my first interaction with No. 1 overall draft pick Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever.”

His mea culpa took a questionable turn:

What happened was the most me thing ever, in one way. I’m sort of known locally, sigh, for having awkward conversations with people before asking brashly conversational questions. I’ve done this for years with Colts coaches Chuck Pagano, Frank Reich and Shane Steichen. I’ve done it with Purdue players Carsen Edwards and Zach Edey. I did it with IU’s Romeo Langford, talking to them as people, not athletes.

Notice something about all those names?

They’re all men.

Not helping, dude.

HuffPost reached out to the Indy Star for comment.

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