College Athletes In Louisiana Must Be At National Anthem, Or Risk Scholarship

BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's newly elected Republican governor Jeff Landry has now put himself in a controversy regarding the LSU women's basketball team. Landry did not like hearing about the women's team not being on the court for the national anthem before its NCAA Regional game against Iowa and Caitlin Clark on Monday night. 

READ: LSU Women's Team Has Been Skipping National Anthem

LSU women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey said her players are involved in a pre-game prayer and last-minute strategy at the time shortly before games, and they have followed the same routine for home games at LSU.

Other LSU Teams Not Present During National Anthem

Landry also learned that the football team and other teams are also not on the field in Tiger Stadium as the national anthem is played for similar reasons. And he delivered a strong message Tuesday for student-athletes at all colleges in Louisiana to follow, or else. 

"It is time that all college boards, including all Boards of Regents in Louisiana, put a policy in place that student-athletes be present for the national anthem, or risk their athletic scholarship," Landry said. "This is a matter of respect that all collegiate coaches should instill."

The Louisiana Freedom Caucus followed Landry's comment on X with its own in support of the governor.

"Respect for the American flag and the people who have fought and died to preserve our freedoms is fundamental to the survival of America in freedom," the Caucus said.

Landry is a former two-term Attorney General of Louisiana and a graduate of the University of Louisiana in Lafayette. 

READ: Caitlin Clark And Iowa Too Much For LSU

After LSU lost to Iowa, Mulkey was asked about her team's absence during the anthem.

"Honestly, I don't even know when the anthem was played," she said. "We kind of have a routine when they're on the floor and they come off at the 12-minute mark. I don't know, we come in and we do our pre-game stuff. I'm sorry, listen, that's nothing intentionally done."

Written by
Guilbeau joined OutKick as an SEC columnist in September of 2021 after covering LSU and the Saints for 17 years at USA TODAY Louisiana. He has been a national columnist/feature writer since the summer of 2022, covering college football, basketball and baseball with some NFL, NBA, MLB, TV and Movies and general assignment, including hot dog taste tests. A New Orleans native and Mizzou graduate, he has consistently won Associated Press Sports Editors (APSE) and Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) awards since covering Alabama and Auburn at the Mobile Press-Register (1993-98) and LSU and the Saints at the Baton Rouge Advocate (1998-2004). In 2021, Guilbeau won an FWAA 1st for a game feature, placed in APSE Beat Writing, Breaking News and Explanatory, and won Beat Writer of the Year from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association (LSWA). He won an FWAA columnist 1st in 2017 and was FWAA's top overall winner in 2016 with 1st in game story, 2nd in columns, and features honorable mention. Guilbeau completed a book in 2022 about LSU's five-time national champion coach - "Everything Matters In Baseball: The Skip Bertman Story" - that is available at, and Barnes & Noble outlets. He lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, the former Michelle Millhollon of Thibodaux who previously covered politics for the Baton Rouge Advocate and is a communications director.