LSU basketball came up big Tuesday night in a historic 133-44 win over McNeese State.

The Tigers set program records for points in a game and margin of victory. Their previous scoring record stood at 125, set in November of last year in a win over Bellarmine. The previous margin of victory record was much older, with the Tigers eclipsing a 76-point win over Prairie View in 1995.

In the win, LSU showcased its defensive skills, forcing 36 turnovers, which turned into 52 points. In the second quarter, the Tigers shut out the Cowgirls entirely, part of a stretch of 13:36 in which they held their opponents scoreless.

In that time, LSU went on a 47-0 run.

“I told them at half, I don’t know if I’ve even been part of that,” LSU head coach Kim Mulkey said. “And a run like that you don’t think about it in the moment. I don’t care who you’re playing. That’s crazy.”

LSU had 20 steals, led by Angel Reese who had six. Flau’jae Johnson had five while freshman Mikaylah Williams had four. Reese added 21 points and 10 rebounds, while freshman Aalyah Del Rosario led the team in scoring with 27 points and 10 rebounds. Aneesah Morrow had 18 points, while Williams had 26.

After missing 10 of their first 13 shots, the Tigers quickly turned their game around – even without Hailey Van Lith, who is out with a foot injury. Still, if you ask Mulkey, the defense is “still catching up” after dealing with player absences. (Reese recently missed four games for undisclosed reasons, and Sa’Myah Smith suffered a season-ending knee injury.)

“You don’t have Angel, then you don’t have Hailey and you don’t have Sa’Myah. So that sets you back temporarily until you can get back on that floor and prepare every day without them,” Mulkey said. “I think when Hailey gets back and if you can keep everybody healthy, I think you’ll start to see some good stuff out there.

“I’m not saying you’re not seeing good stuff now. I see improvement. But I’ll say it again, we can score the ball with a lot of people. But you got to defend and you got to rebound if you want to win championships.”

Still, allowing just 44 points in a game showcases a team’s defensive abilities – regardless of which opponent is on the other side of the stat sheet.

“Their defensive pressure got to us,” McNeese head coach Lynn Kennedy said. “We just didn’t handle it well. LSU caught fire. The fast break really opened it up for them, they [made] some transition shots and that got them going.”

For Del Rosario, the performance serves as an indicator of what she can bring to the Tigers from the bench as the season continues.

“It changed my perspective of the game,” she said. “I knew I was going to have to step up, play big-time minutes on the court and take advantage of the minutes. When I came here, I was not in the best of shape. Now, I feel like I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been.”

Social media drama swirled around the LSU basketball team Thursday, with former Tigers and current WNBA players stirring the pot.

The kerfuffle started with posts by the mothers of Angel Reese and Flau’jae Johnson, each seemingly directed at the other. Reese’s mother Angel Webb Reese complained about text messages with grammatical errors on Instagram Stories, and then Johnson’s mother Kia Brooks called out mother and daughter in her own post.

“You definitely know about grammar errors when your daughter got a 2.0 or less GPA. … Stop being petty, fake and hateful, and take responsibility for you and your daughter’s actions,” Brooks wrote.

While neither Reese nor Johnson addressed the posts on their own social media platforms, former teammates Alexis Morris and Jasmine Carson jumped into the fray.

All four players won the national championship with LSU in April. Morris and Carson now are playing overseas, while Reese and Johnson are still with the Tigers, whose title defense got off to a rocky start.

“Switched up to gang up on me, now y’all fallin’ out,” wrote Morris, who got herself into hot water on social media earlier this year after calling out WNBA veterans.

In another post, she wrote: “Can we just all get (along)? Heck no that’s over with.”

Morris also stood up for LSU head coach Kim Mulkey, writing: “You can’t pay me to bash Kim!”

“Y’all better hope I don’t say nothing,” Carson wrote.

WNBA players also got in on the action, with Las Vegas Aces guard Sydney Colson writing: “I wanna see LSU play LSU cuz what’s goin onnn??”

Washington Mystics center Shakira Austin tried to offer advice, writing: “Listen I’m ALL for speaking your truth, if everybody told their story we all know 75% of coaches would not have a job. But don’t let no quick attention cause any harm to your brand. The best thing is to focus on what’s next bc these folks still gonna get contract extensions…”

Angel Reese is taking her coach in her all-time starting five.

LSU basketball is tipping off its title defense against Colorado on Nov. 6 as part of the 2023 Hall of Fame Series. The four-game showcase, presented by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, is being held at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Ahead of the season opener, several Tigers stars shared their dream starting lineups, pulled from the illustrious list of Hall of Fame members.

“I’m starting strong with Lisa Leslie,” Reese said, before also naming Cheryl Miller, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal to her roster. She pondered her fifth choice before opting for her head coach: “I need a shooter. I’m going with Kim Mulkey.”

Mulkey, 61, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2020. She won three national titles as the head coach of the Baylor Bears, in 2005, 2012 and 2019, and she won her fourth career title with the LSU Tigers in April.

Flau’jae Johnson joined Reese in naming Mulkey to her lineup, and she added O’Neal, Dwyane Wade, Tim Duncan and Allen Iverson.

Hailey Van Lith, meanwhile, put Las Vegas Aces head coach Becky Hammon in her starting five, while also naming Leslie, Bryant, Kevin Garnett and Michael Jordan.

“That’s a tough starting five, right there,” Van Lith said. “Mad tough.”

NCAA basketball champion Flau’jae Johnson and WNBA champions Sydney Colson and Theresa Plaisance all share a passion for their sport and a flair for entertainment.

But they definitely don’t share musical talent, as seen on the latest episode of Colson and Plaisance’s unscripted comedy series “The Syd + TP Show.”

In one segment of the show, the Las Vegas Aces players crash Johnson’s studio time, much to the LSU guard’s chagrin. Colson’s attempt at rapping includes a Chuck E. Cheese reference.

“Look Flau, you want these bars or not?” Colson asks Johnson. “Because we’re trying to be the realest and the illest in the league, you know? They say you’re the best, so show us the best.”

Luckily for Colson and Plaisance, Johnson provides a demonstration of her own skills at the microphone. The LSU sophomore balances her burgeoning basketball and music careers, with the Tigers preparing to start their title defense months after Johnson dropped a 13-song mixtape with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation under its Equity Distribution platform.

“I love making records. Like, I can spit and enjoy freestyling, but I love making songs because I can show my versatility,” Flau’jae told Revolt in August. “I cannot wait for the fans to start hearing my new music.”

While Colson and Plaisance might not have rap careers in their futures, they’re showing off their own talents through their comedy show, which is produced by TOGETHXR, Ryan Reynolds’ Maximum Effort and Fubo.

“I feel like our sense of humor and our personalities are what could attract people to basketball, if they don’t already watch it,” Colson told Forbes.

Flau’jae Johnson dropped a new video Thursday for her song about her national title-winning freshman season at LSU.

The track, called “RedBull 60 Seconds,” is available on her mixtape titled “4 My Fans.” Johnson’s newest album leads with the LSU-inspired song, which originated as a freestyle she originally released as part of a challenge in May.

“They be talking down but I’ll never let it get to me,” she raps. “Came to LSU my freshman year and we made history.”

The new video to go along with the song features Johnson in full LSU gear alongside teammate Angel Reese, and she references head coach Kim Mulkey and her famous fashion sense.

“Put the pennant on the trophy, you ain’t winnin’ don’t approach me,” she raps. “Pull up courtside in a crazy fit, I look like Mulkey.”

The 13-song mixtape was released in July and is presented by Flauge Entertainment in partnership with Roc Nation’s Equity. The songs have been recorded over the last four years, featuring a dynamic range of music styles and storytelling.

“I love making records. Like, I can spit and enjoy freestyling, but I love making songs because I can show my versatility,” Flau’jae told Revolt in August. “I cannot wait for the fans to start hearing my new music.”

She’s been balancing her music career with basketball, as the NCAA season is set to begin with an exhibition on Oct. 26. The team’s first practice on Sept. 25 is set to be open to the public. And as Johnson juggles her talents, she’s excited to see where the journey takes her.

“I still feel like I haven’t scratched the surface of my capabilities,” she said. “I still don’t feel like I accomplished anything just yet. I am just trying to get better, mentally and physically. I just want to be the best version of myself.

“I have been doing this my whole life. Traits like discipline and consistency are something I have been trying to keep going. That is what helps me stay balanced.”

Angel Reese and Flau’jae Johnson are in the business of college basketball.

With 9.9 million people watching LSU basketball win the national title in April, both players’ profiles skyrocketed. Reese’s NIL valuation has reached an estimated $1.7 million, per On3. Johnson’s is at $1.1 million, per On3, and the star player told Sports Illustrated her agreements are around “the mid-seven figures.”

And both players tout their NIL success to high school recruits. They didn’t need to underscore the point for star transfer Hailey Van Lith, who brings a valuation of $546,000 with her to the Tigers.

“She already knew what she had going on,” Reese told SI. But with high schoolers, the potential for NIL deals is a frequent part of the recruiting conversation.

“You wanna be a superstar, come to LSU,” Johnson said.

And that doesn’t just extend to top recruits.

“Even the girls who walk on, they’re getting money,” Reese said. “Everybody’s benefiting from it, not just the stars of the team.”

Johnson has benefited from NIL in a number of ways – including being able to pursue her rap career. While she wants to play in the WNBA, she also has signed a deal with Roc Nation, which wouldn’t have been possible before the NCAA opened the door for NIL deals.

Reese, meanwhile, is building her modeling career and was recently featured in the 2023 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. And she hopes to carry her deals with her to the WNBA, where rookies get paid no more than $75,000 in the first year of their contracts.

“Everybody knows the WNBA doesn’t make that much money, so I just want to be able to grow my brand as much as I can in college before I go to the WNBA,” Reese said. “I’ve done so many photo shoots. I’ve done so many commercials. Being able to pitch those things with the team I have now is going to help me when I graduate and decide to go to the WNBA.”

Aneesah Morrow is excited to show people what she can do on a team like the one she is joining at LSU.

The reigning NCAA women’s basketball champions, LSU is adding top transfers Morrow and Hailey Van Lith to existing stars Angel Reese and Flau’jae Johnson to create the Tigers’ version of a superteam. While all those big names could raise questions about the roster’s ability to gel, Morrow isn’t concerned. In fact, it’s one of the reasons why she chose to transfer to LSU in the first place.

“I’m super excited to join. I just know how hard I work. Every day, my stats showed that I was very consistent every game, I was a double-double last year at DePaul and the year before would be a national freshman of the year,” she said on Haley Jones’ “Sometimes I Hoop” podcast. “So I try to stay as consistent as I possibly can. But I also want to be challenged by my teammates and my coaching staff. I want them to have my back and I felt like LSU was the best fit for that.”

She also knows that winning will require sacrifices. She’ll no longer be the player putting up major points for her team in every game. But she has skills she wants to sharpen, and she believes LSU will give her the opportunity to do so.

“It’s really about what you want to sacrifice for your team,” she said. “I have this conversation with my parents all the time. They tell me, ‘Don’t change your style of play,’ and I say, ‘I won’t change my style of play, but there are things I want to get better in.’”

And as for her teammates, she feels as though they’ll “play great together.” While there are a lot of personalities to balance, she is willing to do what it takes in order to bring a second straight national championship to the Tigers.

“I feel like we’re gonna play great together. I know that a lot of people talk about like egos and whatever it might be, the personalities,” she said. “But at the end of the day, if it comes down to me getting 20 rebounds a game and not scoring a point, that’s that’s what I do for my team to win. Because at the end of the day, that’s all I want to do.”

Even still, she knows that joining a team seeking back-to-back titles can have its pressures. And victory isn’t guaranteed, even for a superteam.

“There’s no guarantee that someone is going to win,” she said. “Of course, every goal is to win the national championship, to win the tournament, to be the best in your conference. But it takes work on a day in, day out basis.”

Hailey Van Lith only visited LSU once, but the guard knew right away that she wanted to be a Tiger.

During her official visit, the Louisville transfer was struck by the team’s chemistry and the way the coaches and players uplift each other. Her experience, she says, was a direct contrast to the narratives she often sees about the team.

“I think sometimes the way the media tries to talk about LSU, it can be almost like in a negative way about their attitudes or who they are as people,” Van Lith told Just Women’s Sports during WNBA All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas.

“It was just an eye-opening experience getting to meet them all. They were the most welcoming, supportive, like loving group of girls, and what I loved about it most is they all wanted to see each other do well.”

LSU established itself as a desirable place for transfers after Angel Reese left Maryland in 2022 and had a breakout year for coach Kim Mulkey’s team on and off the court. Reese led the Tigers to their first national championship, while simultaneously seeing her personal brand take off.

As of June, Reese’s NIL value was reported to be valued at $1.6 million. Since then, she’s appeared in a Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit edition and a music video for Latto and Cardi B’s “Put it on Da Floor Again.” She’s also had a court named after her in her hometown of Randallstown, Md.

Teammate Flau’jae Johnson has enjoyed similar success after her freshman campaign thanks to a budding rap career, which she has pursued in tandem with basketball for years.

The team’s growing list of accomplishments haven’t affected the way LSU players treat each other, and that drew Van Lith to the program.

“Nobody was trying to take someone else’s success down for them to shine brighter,” she said. “Everyone lifted each other up and accepted each other. It was just an environment that you don’t see a lot of, especially with people who are so successful.”

Van Lith is also looking forward to playing in front of LSU’s fans. The Tigers were fifth in the country last season in total attendance, behind South Carolina, Iowa, UConn and Tennessee. They also set a record on LSU’s Senior Night, when 15,721 fans attended the team’s regular season finale at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center, a 74-59 win over Mississippi State.

“The fan base is just crazy,” Van Lith said. “The support for women’s basketball is insane. And that really drew me in because as a player that has that flair, has that swag, I love to entertain a crowd. So it’s important for me to be in an environment where I have a crowd to entertain, because that’s a part of why I love basketball so much.”

Van Lith comes to LSU after graduating from Louisville in the spring. She finished her degree in three years and now enters the Tigers program as a graduate transfer for her senior season. Van Lith averaged 15.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.3 steals per game during her career as a Cardinal. Named to two All-ACC First Teams, she led Louisville to the Final Four last season.

Van Lith, 21, joins fellow transfer Aneesah Morrow from DePaul on LSU’s roster, making the Tigers an early favorite for the 2023 NCAA Championship.

Eden Laase is a Staff Writer at Just Women’s Sports. Follow her on Twitter @eden_laase.

Flau’jae Johnson’s basketball career is taking off. So is her rapping career, with an EP on the way and a spot at Jay-Z’s music festival in Philadelphia.

The LSU basketball star will perform at the annual Made in America festival, which is headlined by SZA and Lizzo. The lineup for the event, which will take place over Labor Day weekend, also includes Atlanta rapper Latto, who featured LSU’s Angel Reese in her recent music video.

Johnson is also set to release an EP titled “Best of Both Worlds,” though the release date has not yet been announced.

Her success in both arenas of her life should come as no surprise. As a basketball player, she excelled on the court in high school to the point that her jersey was retired before she even graduated, and then she helped the Tigers win a national title in her freshman year at LSU. As a musician, she was featured on “The Rap Game” and twice appeared on “America’s Got Talent” for her rap skills.

This summer, her hometown of Savannah, Georgia, is set to name an intersection after her, capped off by a concert and a cookout. And after that, she’ll set her sights on going back-to-back on national titles with LSU.

The young star draws inspiration from her father Jason Johnson, a prominent rapper in the local music scene who was shot and killed months before Johnson was born.

“Just being who he was, I feel like it’s just in me. I get inspired, but it’s really in me to do great things,” she told USA Today. “I feel like he’s who I look up to, especially in music. Cadences and flows and rhymes that I do are inspired by him. He still has a lot of inspiration on everything that I do.”

Johnson’s success has come with the hope of getting into the studio with fellow athlete and rapper Damian Lillard, who also is a star in the NBA. She’s also working on a track with Lil Wayne, and three-time Grammy winner Wyclef Jean has indicated that he wants to work with Johnson.

And thanks to NIL, she can capitalize on the success of both her basketball and rap careers.

“It’s a blessing to have NIL because now I can sell my music and my merch and my name, image and likeness and anything else I want to do, so it’s great,” she said. “… There’s literally nothing you can’t do with NIL. You just gotta be creative.”

Flau’jae Johnson dropped new bars Monday, which included name-dropping new LSU pickup Hailey Van Lith.

In the remix of Latto’s newly released track “Put It On Da Floor,” Johnson raps about LSU women’s basketball repeating as national champions, noting, “We got Van Lith, that’s what I stress if they suggest we can’t repeat.”

Two of the top transfers on the market in Van Lith and Aneesah Morrow have joined the Tigers this offseason in the wake of their run to the NCAA Tournament title.

Johnson’s lyrics echo teammate Angel Reese’s sentiments that the team will enter next season with a chip on its collective shoulder in spite of — or perhaps because of — the national championship win.

“The chip is on our shoulder, for sure,” Reese told Just Women’s Sports. “Everyone is going to be coming at us, just like last year, but that makes the game fun.”

As of right now, LSU has the best odds to win the 2024 national championship at +250, according to FanDuel sportsbook. UConn sits in second at +700, while national runner-up Iowa comes in third at +900.