“I did everything I wanted to do in college and I… My ultimate goal is to become a professional athlete – and to be one of the best basketball players ever: Angel Reese says during ‘Vogue’ photo shoot

LSU Star Angel Reese Declares for WNBA Draft In Vogue Shoot

Angel Reese Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

One of the biggest stars in college basketball is going pro.

LSU Tigers forward Angel Reese announced on Wednesday, April 3, that she has declared for the WNBA Draft.

True to her style as an outspoken, trailblazing women’s basketball superstar, the player known as the Bayou Barbie made the announcement via a photo shoot in Vogue.

“Of course, I like to do everything big,” Reese, 21, told Vogue. “I didn’t want anything to be basic.”

Reese seemingly did it all in her four years in college. In addition to winning the 2023 national championship with the Tigers, Reese is a two-time first-team All-American and the reigning SEC Player of the Year.

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Just as importantly, she’s been one of the women’s basketball players at the forefront of the name, image and likeness era in college sports that has finally seen student-athletes benefiting financially from their popularity.

Reese has signed endorsement deals with Goldman Sachs, Reebok, Topps, AirBnb, Beats by Dre and more — something that was unheard of in college athletics just a few years ago.

“I’ve done everything I wanted to in college,” Reese said. “I’ve won a national championship, I’ve gotten [SEC] Player of the Year, I’ve been an All-American. My ultimate goal is to be a pro — and to be one of the greatest basketball players to play, ever. I feel like I’m ready.”

LSU Star Angel Reese Declares for WNBA Draft In Vogue Shoot

Angel Reese Simon Bruty/Anychance/Getty Images

Being a successful African American woman athlete, however, also means Reese has had to deal with increased scrutiny.

She was the center of controversy last year when her trash-talking and “you can’t see me” gesture took center stage during the national championship game.

The moment highlighted the double standard that Black athletes face, as Iowa’s Caitlin Clark did not receive the same backlash for making the same gesture in a previous game.

“Everybody can have their opinion on Angel Reese, but y’all don’t know her. Y’all don’t know Angel Reese,” her teammate Flau’jae Johnson said after the Tigers’ NCAA Tournament Elite Eight loss to Iowa on Monday.

“I know the real Angel Reese, and the person I see every day is a strong person, is a caring, loving person. But the crown she wears is heavy. She’s the type of teammate that’s going to make you believe in yourself.”

Clark and Reese’s star power made that game the most-watched women’s college basketball game of all time, averaging 12.3 million viewers and peaking at 16.1 million.

With those two (and plenty more stars) headed to the WNBA, the W should continue seeing a surge in popularity that has been ongoing for several years.

While Clark is almost certainly going to be the No. 1 pick in the WNBA Draft, scheduled for April 15 in Brooklyn, Reese is also projected to go in the first round.

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