Hawkeye star Kathleen Doyle looks ahead to WNBA after early end to Iowa career

The Big Ten Player of the Year is ready to take the next step after her successful Hawkeye career.


Katina Zentz

Iowa guard Kathleen Doyle jumps for a lay-up during the Iowa vs. Ohio State Women’s Big Ten Tournament game at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis on Friday, March 6, 2020. The Buckeyes defeated the Hawkeyes 87-66.

Isaac Goffin, Sports Reporter

After her college career was cut off short due to the COVID-19 pandemic that canceled the 2020 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, Kathleen Doyle is in limbo between her time as a Hawkeye and her potential WNBA career.

Doyle feels like she has gotten a lot out of her four years at Iowa, which included an Elite Eight run in 2019 and many individual awards.

“My four years at Iowa were extremely special,” Doyle said. “I got to play with some of my best friends, made lifelong friends. I also got to play for one of the best coaching staffs in the country, and they really take pride in developing us in the classroom, on the court, and as people, and they held us to a high standard. So I definitely grew in a lot of areas in my life, and I will always be grateful for that.”

The guard made strides in every season she wore the Black and Gold. As a freshman, she started 29 games and scored in double digits in 15 of them. She also set the freshman record for steals with 71 that season. After that impressive campaign, she was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team.

There was no sophomore slump for Doyle. She led the Big Ten in conference games in assists per game at 7.5 and surpassed many of her season highs from the previous year, helping her be selected to the All-Big Ten Second Team by the league coaches.

Even though she missed the first seven games of her junior season due to injury, Doyle still broke many of her personal season bests and was named by the league coaches to the All-Big Ten First Team.

In her senior season, the awards she won speak for themselves. She earned Big Ten Player of the Year and was named an All-American by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association among other awards, such as being named to the College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-America Women’s Basketball Second Team.

“Basketball wise your freshman year, you are nervous, you hope you’ll impact your team in a positive way,” Doyle said. “As you gain experience, you gain confidence in yourself, and it really helps you grow as a person, and you’re ready to step foot out into the real world and really make a difference based on your experiences in the program.”

When Doyle does step her foot out into the real world, she hopes it’s in the WNBA. The league’s draft is on April 17, but the start of the WNBA season has already been delayed. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Doyle is working out however she can so that she is ready to go whenever sports start back up again.

According to DraftSite.com, Doyle is projected to go in the second round to the Minnesota Lynx in the seventh version of the mock draft. This is a massive change from their first version of the draft, which came out after the 2018-2019 season and didn’t have Doyle being selected at all.

“I really hope I make a roster,” Doyle said. “But I’m really excited about it. It will be a dream come true for sure, and playing amongst the best of the best is something that I really look forward to and try to prove myself at a different level, so I’m really excited about the potential opportunity.”