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#pounditMonday, May 27, 2024

Kim Mulkey answers whether LSU intentionally skipped national anthem

Kim Mulkey at a press conference

The LSU women’s basketball team was not on the court when the national anthem was played prior to their Elite Eight game against Iowa on Monday night, but head coach Kim Mulkey insists that was a coincidence.

LSU left the floor at MVP Arena in Albany, N.Y. just before “The Star-Spangled Banner” was performed. A video that went viral on social media showed Iowa players and staff members standing and holding hands at one of the court while the other side was empty.

After Iowa defeated LSU 94-87, Mulkey was asked if the Tigers were making some sort of statement by remaining in the locker room during the national anthem. She said she was unaware of when the anthem would be played and that her team was just going through their normal pregame routine.

“Honestly, I don’t even know when the anthem was played,” Mulkey told reporters. “We kind of have a routine where we’re on the floor and then they come off at the 12-minute mark. I don’t know, we come in and we do our pregame stuff. I’m sorry, listen, that’s nothing intentionally done.”

National anthem protests have been a popular way for players and staff members to make political statements in recent years. Mulkey claims that is not what LSU was doing. At the very least, she confirmed that her team is not concerned with the anthem and did not feel the need to make any effort to be present while it was played.

If LSU did skip the anthem as a form of protest, that will be their last chance to do so this season. Caitlin Clark torched the Tigers and sent social media into a frenzy in the process in Iowa’s revenge game.

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