Embattled LSU Women’s Basketball Coach Attacks Yet Another Newsaper

Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

LSU women’s basketball coach Kim Mulkey had little to say Saturday about a much-anticipated Washington Post profile exploring her background and coaching career, which she preemptively threatened to sue the paper over last week.

Instead, Mulkey went on the offense against yet another newspaper. This time, it was storied West Coast outlet the Los Angeles Times, which published a column critical of her program over the weekend.

At a press conference after LSU’s victory over the UCLA Bruins on Saturday, Mulkey flamed the pre-game commentary by LA Times reporter Ben Bolch as sexist and offensive.

“There were some things in this commentary, guys, that you should be offended by as women,” she said. “It was so sexist and they don’t even know it.”

Bolch’s commentary, titled, “UCLA-LSU is America’s sweethearts vs. its basketball villains” dramatically described Saturday’s match as a “reckoning” between the much maligned LSU Tigers and the supposedly “saintlike” UCLA Bruins. It focused on the teams’ dueling reputations and made much of Mulkey’s comments about the Post article, as well LSU’s “taunting” star player Angel Reese.

Mulkey seized on Bolch’s sensational language, particularly his use of the term “dirty debutantes,” and said she couldn’t stand to let that kind of language deployed against the “kids” on her team.

“Dirty debutantes? Are you kidding me? I’m not gonna let you talk about 18- to 21-year-old kids in that tone. It was even sexist for this reporter to say UCLA was ‘milk and cookies,’” she said.

In the article, Bolch writes, “Do you prefer America’s sweethearts or its dirty debutantes? Milk and cookies or Louisiana hot sauce?”

“I’m in the last third of my career, but I’m not gonna let sexism continue. And if you don’t think that’s sexism then you’re in denial,” Mulkey added. “How dare people attack kids like that.”

Bolch did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s requests for comment. It was unclear if he had heard or responded to Mulkey’s remarks.

As for the Washington Post article she so passionately railed against? Mulkey was surprised to hear it had dropped Saturday morning, just a few hours before the game. She said she hadn’t read the article and had no plans to read it, either.

“No, ma’am, I haven’t read it and I probably won’t read it. I probably will have my attorneys communicate with me to see if there’s anything in there that we need to be concerned about,” she said.

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