Shaquille O’Neal Escorts Angel Reese and Her Mom for LSU’s Senior Day: ‘Bayou Barbie Is My Favorite Senior’

O'Neal supported the LSU Tigers star at his alma mater on Sunday

<p>NBAonTNT/X</p> Shaquille O


Shaquille O'Neal and Angel Reese
  • Shaquille O'Neal escorted Angel Reese and her mom out onto the court during LSU's senior day celebration

  • The Inside the NBA host was wearing a shirt that said "Bayou Barbie is My Favorite Senior"

  • O'Neal has become a mentor for Reese since her rise to fame at his alma mater, LSU

Shaquille O'Neal and Angel Reese shared a special moment in front of fans at LSU on Sunday.

O'Neal, 51, escorted Reese, 21, and her mother, also named Angel, from the locker room onto the court at his alma mater LSU, where Reese was being honored during the Tigers' senior day celebration.

Reese's mother and O'Neal sported custom-made shirts with animations of the LSU star on the front. On the back, the shirts said, "Bayou Barbie is My Favorite Senior," referring to Reese's well-known nickname.

Tigers head coach Kim Mulkey met the group on the court to pose for photos as fans chanted, "One more year" at Reese.

The senior day ceremony took place during halftime of the Tigers' game against the Kentucky Wildcats, which LSU won 77-56.

Related: Angel Reese Says NCAA Championship Forced Her to 'Mature Quickly': 'It's a Fast Life I'm Living' (Exclusive)

O'Neal was a star at LSU before he was drafted by the Orlando Magic in 1992. In the last year, the basketball legend has become a mentor to Reese, who rose to fame during LSU's championship run in the 2023 March Madness tournament.

After the game, Reese told ESPN it's "been great" to have O'Neal's support. "He's really smart, not just on the basketball court, but just in life," Reese said of her mentor.

She continued, "He has his doctorate, so he's educated, being a lot of things outside of basketball. Being able to have somebody like that has been a great inspiration for me. And of course, enjoying the moment like this with him and the rest of my family was fun tonight," per ESPN.

Ethan Miller/Getty; Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Shaquille O'Neal; Angel Reese
Ethan Miller/Getty; Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Shaquille O'Neal; Angel Reese

Related: Shaquille O'Neal Says Angel Reese Can Trash Talk All She Wants: 'When You're a Champion, You're Allowed to'

Last April, O'Neal came to Reese's defense against online trolls who didn't support her rise to fame.

"Shut your dumb a-- up leave Angel Reese alone," O'Neal wrote on X, formerly Twitter, when a reporter spoke poorly about her in a post.

Reese reposted O'Neal's rebuttal to her own page, and wrote, "yeah my uncle shaq don't play bout me. period."

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And on an episode of his podcast, The Big Podcast with Shaq, the NBA legend said Reese is "probably the greatest athlete to ever come out of LSU sports," adding that the accolade applies to "male or female" athletes from the university.

In June, Reese told PEOPLE she's definitely felt "overwhelmed" with "so many" eyes on her, but she's embraced the opportunity to be a role model.

"It's a blessing, honestly. I've kind of embraced it. People are watching me," she said. "I mean, it's a fast life I'm living. I think I have to mature quickly."

She added, "I'm going to learn from mistakes that I make, but I have a lot of great people around me that help me and I'm blessed to have them around me. I'm happy."

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