LSU Basketball Coach Says at First Press Conference: ‘I’m Going to Take the Damn Mask off Because I’ve Got a Lot to Say’

BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA - APRIL 26: Kim Mulkey, the newly hired women's basketball coach at Louisiana State University, speaks during a press conference at Pete Maravich Assembly Center on April 26, 2021 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Photo by Peter Forest/Getty Images)
Peter Forest/Getty Images

Louisiana State University’s (LSU) new head coach of women’s basketball, Kim Mulkey, opened up her first press conference Monday by ripping her “damn mask off” because she had “a lot to say.”

“I’m going to take this damn mask off because I’ve got a lot to say,” she said as she threw it to the side.

Mulkey’s theatrics were described by the local paper:

She began her tenure as the face of the LSU Tigers women’s basketball team by fidgeting with her mask and then throwing it to the side. Not because it was bothering her or because the microphone couldn’t pick up what she was saying, but to make a point about how little she thinks about wearing masks. And the crowd in attendance cheered.

The backlash from Mulkey comments was swift:

The introductory press conference came after Mulkey as then-Baylor Bears coach said the NCAA tournament should halt coronavirus testing for the Final Four.

“After the games today and tomorrow, there’s four teams left, I think, on the men’s side and the women’s side,” Mulkey stated. “They need to dump the COVID testing. Wouldn’t it be a shame to keep COVID testing and then you got kids that test positive or something and they don’t get to play in the Final Four? So you just need to forget the COVID tests and get the four teams playing in each Final Four and go battle it out.”

“One conference does this, one conference does that. The CDC says this. Everybody is confused. I’m confused,” Mulkey also said in December. “I’m uncomfortable coaching. I understand, COVID is real. I’ve had it — come talk to me sometime. But I don’t know … all the calls and procedures, that’s gonna go on and make it unusual, uncomfortable for every program. We’re no different at Baylor.”

Mulkey won a lot at Baylor, including three NCAA titles in 21 seasons, along with 12 regular-season and 11 Big 12 tournament titles before moving over to LSU.


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