Attitudes seem to be shifting due to NIL money.
Angel Reese found herself benched for the entire second half in LSU women’s basketball’s recent game against Kent State. Despite being the reigning Final Four MVP, she played only 13 minutes. The incident, which stemmed from an early ill-advised three-pointer, was labeled a “coach’s decision” by head coach Kim Mulkey. When pressed about Reese’s limited playtime, Mulkey did not provide further details, merely stating it was a “coach’s decision.”
According to Glenn Guilbeau, a long-time LSU coverage veteran, Reese’s benching was attributed to her attitude, and she is currently undergoing an “attitude adjustment.” Despite the setback, Reese handled the situation gracefully in post-game interviews. However, questions persist about her future status with the team.
Adding fuel to the fire, Reese’s mother inadvertently sparked a conflict with the mother of teammate Fla’jae Johnson, Kia Brooks. Brooks claimed that Reese has a GPA of 2.0 or less. The online exchange escalated, drawing in former Tigers players and other WNBA athletes, creating a buzz of drama in Baton Rouge.
The uncertainty extends to Reese’s return to the court. In the game against Kent State, she recorded 11 points and five rebounds in just 13 minutes, a stark contrast to her previous prominence. With other guards seeing more playing time, it’s evident that Reese is no longer a priority in the lineup.
As LSU gears up to face Southeastern Louisiana, there’s ambiguity about Reese’s role. Mulkey remains tight-lipped on the matter, leaving questions unanswered. Reese’s agent, Jeanine Ogbonnaya, provides no further context, and there’s speculation that Reese may be facing suspension.
The unfolding situation raises concerns about the reigning national champion program, highlighting the complexities in today’s college sports landscape, especially with the influence of NIL money. All eyes are on LSU’s next game for potential answers and resolution.