LSU's Hailey Van Lith Defends Black Teammates Over 'Racist' Media Comments

Photo: Getty Images

LSU basketball star Hailey Van Lith called out "racist" commentary directed toward her Black teammates following the release of a Los Angeles Angeles Times column that labeled the team as "villains.

In the LA Times column, writer Ben Bolch framed the Sweet 16 NAACP women's basketball tournament game between UCLA and LSU as a battle between "America's sweethearts," referring to the Bruins, and "its dirty debutantes," in reference to the Tigers.

"Do you prefer the team that wants to grow women's basketball or the one seemingly hellbent on dividing it?" Bolch asked his readers.

After LSU defeated UCLA 78-69, Van Lith said she believes the criticism of her team is fueled by racism.

"We do have a lot of Black women on this team, and unfortunately, that bias does exist still today, and a lot of the people that are making those comments are being racist towards my teammates," Van Lith said in post-game remarks. "I'm in a unique situation where I see with myself, I'll talk trash and I'll get a different reaction than if Angel [Reese] talks trash. I have a duty to my teammates to have their back.

"Some of the words in that article were very sad and upsetting... calling us basically the 'dirty debutantes' that has nothing to do with sports," she added.

The LA Times column was later updated with the removal of the paragraph that referred to the Tigers as "dirty debutantes."

"A previous version of this commentary did not meet Times editorial standards," the paper said in a statement.

While other parts of the column were updated, Bolch still writes that UCLA "operates in the saintly shadows while being as wholesome as a miniature stuffed Bruin mascot" in comparison to LSU.

The Black Information Network is your source for Black News! Get the latest news 24/7 on The Black Information Network. Listen now on the iHeartRadio app or click HERE to tune in live.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content