Augustus is 1st female athlete with statue on LSU campus

Jan 14, 2023, 11:04 PM | Updated: Jan 15, 2023, 3:59 pm
Seimone Augustus, right, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnes...

Seimone Augustus, right, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnesota Lynx player who won four WNBA Championships, unveils her statue with LSU head coach Kim Mulkey, left, at the LSU campus on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, in Baton Rouge, La. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

(AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

              Seimone Augustus, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnesota Lynx player who won four WNBA Championships, speaks before her statue unveiling at the LSU campus on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, in Baton Rouge, La. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
            
              Seimone Augustus, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnesota Lynx player who won four WNBA Championships, picks a young fan out of the crowd before her statue unveiling at the LSU campus on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, in Baton Rouge, La. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
            
              Seimone Augustus, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnesota Lynx player who won four WNBA Championships, cries before her statue unveiling at the LSU campus on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, in Baton Rouge, La. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
            
              Seimone Augustus, right, a former LSU player who lead her team to multiple final fours and a Minnesota Lynx player who won four WNBA Championships, unveils her statue with LSU head coach Kim Mulkey, left, at the LSU campus on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, in Baton Rouge, La. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Seimone Augustus gazed up at the bronze likeness of her in front of LSU’s basketball training center and began wiping away tears.

Augustus, who led the Tigers to three women’s Final Four appearances before starring in the WNBA and in international play, became LSU’s first female student-athlete to be immortalized with a statue on campus Sunday. Hers stands alongside those of former LSU basketball stars Bob Pettit, Shaquille O’Neal and Pete Maravich in a plaza that was packed with applauding fans during the unveiling.

“I’m still trying to process this,” Augustus said as she addressed the crowd shortly before fifth-ranked LSU hosted Auburn in the nearby Pete Maravich Assembly Center. “It looks like the whole of Baton Rouge is out here. But this feels good.

“I used to have a teammate that said, ‘I didn’t do this by myself,'” Augustus continued. “And clearly, with everyone that’s here, I didn’t.

“I needed everyone one’s support and love and protection … and I just wanted to say thank you,” she said. “Thank you for everything that you’ve done. Thank you to Baton Rouge, thank you to LSU, thank you to Louisiana. You’ve always been my motivation, my driving force in making sure that I excelled.”

Augustus, a Baton Rouge native, emerged before the crowd wearing a brown suit and carrying a purple and gold parasol that she bobbed up and down to the beat of a “second line” brass band trailing behind her.

LSU second-year coach Kim Mulkey was among the dignitaries standing nearby. She hugged the emotional Augustus and spoke into her ear before heading back to the arena for the game.

Mulkey said she told Augustus “how proud I am of her and that I’m so grateful to have witnessed this and been a part of it.”

“She’s so deserving,” Mulkey added. “She had tears in her eyes and those were tears of joy and humbleness and I just wanted to hug her.”

Former LSU teammate Sylvia Fowles also attended.

Augustus exchanged pleasantries and posed for photos with fans crowded up against barricades surrounding the statue before heading to the game, where she again was honored and greeted with rousing applause between the first and second quarters.

Augustus played at LSU from the 2002-03 through 2005-06 seasons. A two-time All-American who averaged 19.3 points during her career, she was drafted first overall in the 2006 WNBA Draft by Minnesota.

She was a four-time WNBA champion and eight-time All-Star during a pro career that ended in 2019. She also won three Olympic gold medals (2008, 2012 and 2016) with Team USA.

___

AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Australia's Nick Kyrgios, left, and Serbia's Novak Djokovic shake hands following an exhibition mat...
Associated Press

Tennis star Kyrgios to contest Australian assault charge

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Tennis star Nick Kyrgios was due to appear in an Australian court Friday to apply to have an assault charge stemming from events two years ago dismissed on mental health grounds. His lawyer Michael Kukulies-Smith appeared in a court in Kyrgios’ hometown of Canberra in October and asked for an adjournment […]
16 hours ago
Philadelphia Eagles' Jalen Hurts pauses during a news conference at the NFL football team's trainin...
Associated Press

Hurts ready for historic Super Bowl matchup with Mahomes

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Brandon Graham laughed as he recalled all the doubters who rushed him during the offseason and blurted out the same question — the main concern, really — about the state of the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback. “What’s Jalen going to do?” said Graham, the strip-sacking defensive end. Yes, it’s hard to remember now, […]
2 days ago
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, right, and European Commission President Ursula von der Le...
Associated Press

IOC details Russia stance for Olympics, cites human rights

GENEVA (AP) — The IOC stepped up efforts Thursday to explain its position on trying to help Russian athletes qualify for next year’s Paris Olympics amid a backlash from Ukraine and its allies. The International Olympic Committee’s move last week to map a pathway to Paris for athletes from Russia and Belarus who have not […]
2 days ago
FILE - Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot dribbles the ball against the New York Liberty during...
Associated Press

Vandersloot latest star to join New York Liberty

NEW YORK (AP) — Courtney Vandersloot became the latest star to join the New York Liberty. Vandersloot, who had played her entire 12-year career with the Chicago Sky, announced Thursday on social media that she would play with the Liberty this season, a day after Breanna Stewart said she’d play in New York. The moves […]
2 days ago
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes talks to the media before an NFL football workout Th...
Associated Press

Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes gets back to work for Super Bowl

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Patrick Mahomes strolled through Arrowhead Stadium without any issues with his injured right ankle on Thursday, and the Kansas City Chiefs quarterback expects to practice fully in the next 10 days leading up to the Super Bowl. Mahomes sprained the ankle during the divisional round against Jacksonville, and he was […]
2 days ago
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady stands on the field before an NFL football game against ...
Associated Press

Tom Brady’s plate remains full after retirement announcement

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tom Brady’s future figures to be busy. The seven-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback’s retirement announcement ended speculation about if and where Brady might want to play next season, opening the door for numerous off-the-field endeavors that could occupy his time. It was announced last May that whenever Brady stepped away from his […]
2 days ago
Augustus is 1st female athlete with statue on LSU campus