Angel Reese and Olivia Dunne Pose Together at 'SI Swimsuit' Issue Party: 'LSU's FINESTTTT'

Reese and Dunne are the first college athletes to be featured in the coveted issue

Noam Galai/Getty Images for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit
Noam Galai/Getty Images for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit

Name a more iconic duo...we'll wait.

LSU athletes Angel Reese and Olivia Dunne were all smiles on Thursday night in New York City, celebrating their debuts in the 2023 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.

Reese, 21, wore a stunning red gown to the event at the Hard Rock Hotel in the city, while Dunn, 20, chose a sheer, black dress for the launch.

The LSU stars, who are the first college athletes to be featured in the coveted issue, posed for a photo together. Reese posted it on Twitter later, writing, "LSU's FINESTTTT" and tagging Dunne.

Related:Gymnast Olivia Dunne Makes Her 'SI Swimsuit' Debut: 'I Can Be Strong and Sexy' (Exclusive)

Dunne, currently a junior at the university, is the NIL's highest-paid female athlete, bringing in over three million dollars in brand deals.

"When I first got the call, I honestly was in disbelief," she told PEOPLE of learning she'd be featured in the issue. "That's the best word to describe it. I got off the phone, I was screaming and jumping around, and I called my mom immediately, and I think I cried."

SI Swimsuit Editor-in-Chief MJ Day told PEOPLE that she wanted to include Dunne, who has dealt with criticism during her rise to fame, for "owning" her worth as an athlete and a woman.

Ben Watts
Ben Watts

"Usually being a D1 athlete, an all-academic and an industrious entrepreneur is enough to garner respect and accolades. But when you are Livvy Dunne and you also mix in being arrestingly beautiful, you unfortunately garner the ire and resentment of a certain niche population," Day said.

"... The backlash she received for 'leveraging' her sexuality for endorsement dollars after the NIL restrictions were lifted is incorrect. We are here to celebrate this incredible young woman and encourage the world to respect and applaud Livvy and her fellow athletes for owning the blood, sweat and tears that have fueled a lifetime of achievements."

Related:LSU's Angel Reese Makes Her 'Sports Illustrated' Swimsuit Issue Debut: 'I Embrace My Body'

Reese, fresh off helping the Louisiana State Tigers win its first NCAA women's basketball championship, was named the "Most Outstanding Player" of the Final Four.

Yu Tsai
Yu Tsai

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Reese told SI she was nervous about the photoshoot at first, but soon felt at ease.

"I had on thong bathing suits and I didn't think I was going to be comfortable, but [everyone] made me feel really comfortable," she said. "I work out a lot. I embrace my body and who I am and every mark on my body. I probably feel the sexiest in a bathing suit."

Off the court, Reese is one of the top-earning college athletes with $1.3 million in endorsement deals for brands like Coach, McDonald's and Amazon.

"Having so many people come back to me and say, 'You guys have changed the game. You guys have been a part of history,' I embraced that," Reese, who was photographed by Yu Tsai, told SI. "Just being able to be a part of this has just been amazing for me this year, and it's been a blessing."

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