Joe Biden calls LSU forward Angel Reese to congratulate him on his championship win

Joe Biden calls LSU forward Angel Reese to congratulate him on his championship win

(CNN) President Joe Biden spoke with the Louisiana State University basketball star Angel Reese In a phone call to congratulate her The White House said Friday about the Tigers’ NCAA Championship victory.

Biden spoke with Tigers head coach Kim Mulkey and passed on a message to Dan Hurley, the men’s championship-winning head coach, the White House said. Yukon HuskiesInvite both teams to the White House to offer his congratulations.

No specific date for the visits has been set yet, the White House said.

Earlier Friday, Reese said he would travel to the White House with his team, days after First Lady Jill Biden suggested she might also invite runner-up Iowa.

“Looking back on it, you don’t get that experience (to visit the White House),” Reese said in an interview with ESPN.

“I know my team definitely wants to go, my coaches are in favor of it, so I’m going to do what’s best for the team. If they want to go, we decide we’re going to go. Then we’re going to go.”

After the Tigers beat the University of Iowa Hawkeyes 102-85 for their first NCAA women’s basketball national championship on Sunday, Reese said Wednesday that neither she nor her team will be visiting the White House.

After Jill Biden’s comments suggested Iowa should be invited as well, Reese told “I’m a Sportsman” podcast hosts Brandon Marshall and Ashley Nicole Moss: “I don’t accept apologies for saying what you said. … You can’t go back on some of the things you say. . . . They can get that attention. We’ll go to the Obamas. We’ll go to Michael. We’ll go to Barack.”

Rees was named the women’s player of the tournament as a result of her outstanding performance.

“Early on, we were hurt,” Reese said. “It was emotional for us because we knew how hard we worked all year for everything. To see that, it hurt us at the time.”

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Following Sunday’s national championship win, Mulkey said the team would go to the White House if invited. On Wednesday, the school’s athletic department said it would “certainly accept the invitation.”

Speaking on Monday, Jill Biden congratulated both teams for their performances in Sunday’s national championship game, and highlighted Iowa’s athleticism in particular.

“Last night, I attended the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship,” Biden said during an event at the Colorado State Capitol in Denver.

“So, I know champions come to the White House, we always do. So, we hope LSU comes, but you know, I’m going to tell Joe [Biden] I think Iowa should come, too, because they played a good game.

Reese, a 20-year-old forward, responded to Biden’s comments, calling them “a joke” on Monday, and in an Instagram post from “The Shade Room,” the NCAA champion commented: “We’re not coming. Period.”

By Tuesday, Biden appeared to walk back the comments, with first lady press secretary Vanessa Valdivia tweeting that they should “appreciate the historic game and all female athletes. The White House.”

After tweeting his congratulations to Barack’s team, Reese’s teammate Alex Morris took to Twitter to ask Michelle Obama if he could celebrate his team’s victory.

A spokeswoman for Obama declined to comment.

Meanwhile, Caitlin Clark of Iowa said Tuesday that Iowa shouldn’t be invited to the White House.

CNN’s Amy Woodyatt, Jill Martin and Ben Morse contributed to this report.


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