HAMMOND, La. (AP) — LSU All-America forward Angel Reese was not with the Tigers when they tipped off against Southeastern Louisiana on Friday night.
LSU did not immediately provide a reason for Reese’s absence, but coach Kim Mulkey was expected to address it after the game.
The surprise scratching of Reese from the lineup comes after she was benched for the second half of LSU’s 109-79 victory over Kent State on Tuesday. Mulkey characterized that as a “coach’s decision” and did not elaborate.
Reese had started LSU’s first four games, during which the Tigers went 3-1, and averaged 17 points and 10.3 rebounds during those games.
Reese, nicknamed the “Bayou Barbie” and known for her eyelash extensions and pink finger nails, led LSU to its first national title in women’s basketball last season. She also has parlayed her popularity into name, image, and likeness endorsements valued at more than $1 million, making her one of the top-earning female college athletes.
Reese led the Southeastern Conference in both scoring (23 points per game) and rebounding (15.4 per game) last season, becoming just the fourth player to lead the league in both categories.
Her 34 double-doubles that season set an NCAA record and her 23 consecutive double-doubles to begin last season broke Sylvia Fowles’ previous LSU record of 19.
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AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball
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