Angel Reese was not with No. 7 LSU for its 106-47 home win against Texas Southern on Monday, missing a second straight contest for unknown reasons.
LSU coach Kim Mulkey did not mention when Reese would be back, nor did she offer reporters any information regarding the decision to keep Reese off the court.
“You always have to deal with locker room issues,” Mulkey said after the victory over Texas Southern. “Sometimes you don’t know about it. Sometimes you want to know more than you’re entitled to know. I’m going to protect my players, always. They are more important.”
Reese was benched early in the second half of LSU’s 109-79 win over Kent State last week. Mulkey called that benching a coach’s decision.
Come Friday, Reese did not travel with the team for a game at Southeastern Louisiana. Mulkey refused to divulge why the junior forward was not on that trip.
“It’s very obvious Angel was not in uniform,” Mulkey said Friday. “Angel is a part of this basketball team, and we hope to see her sooner rather than later. I’m not gonna answer any more. That’s it. That’s all y’all need to know.”
LSU (5-1), the defending national champion, has encountered some turmoil early in the 2023-24 season. The Tigers lost to Colorado 92-78 on opening night, with Mulkey criticizing her players’ toughness after the game.
“I’m disappointed and surprised in some individual players that I thought would just be tougher and have a little fight and leadership about them,” Mulkey said.
LSU defeated Iowa in last April’s national championship game for the program’s first title in women’s basketball. Reese led the Tigers with averages of 23 points and 15.4 rebounds per game and was selected first-team All-America.
In four games to start the new season, Reese has averaged 17 points and 10.3 rebounds in just 22.3 minutes per contest.
–Field Level Media