Angel Reese of LSU and Jordan Hawkins of UConn sent each other their best wishes as cousins. On April 2, LSU defeated the University of Iowa 102-85; the next day, the University of Connecticut defeated San Diego State University 76-59.
The college basketball stars won their respective championship games. Once their family decided to celebrate their victory on Monday, Hawkins revealed on TODAY what his cousin had texted him.
“(She) said she was proud of me,” he told Hoda, Craig and Savannah on Tuesday. “We both said we need to go home right away for the cookout. I know it’s going to be crazy. The whole family is going to be there.”
Angel Reese and Hawkins are both from Maryland. While Reese was up outside of Baltimore and attended St. Frances Academy, Hawkins grew up in Gaithersburg, a suburb of Washington, D.C., and attended DeMatha Catholic High School.
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“Man, it’s truly amazing because I just remember just being in D.C. where her,” Hawkins said. “We (were) just kids, just dreaming about this moment and look at us now — two national championships, one family. That’s pretty cool.”
The victories marked UConn’s first in nearly ten years and LSU’s first ever for either of their basketball schools, but the Jordan Hawkin’s sixth overall.
The starter for UConn stated that head coach Dan Hurley had the players work toward breaking the program’s drought constantly.
“I remember when me and coach Hurley (sat) on a Zoom during Covid,” Hawkins recalled. “He said how we can turn this program around (and) win the national championship. And now to be doing it is amazing. I love this team. I love coach Hurley to death. It was truly an amazing moment to do this with him.”
Hawkins added that he was still processing what it actually meant to win a title.
“Man, it was a feeling I couldn’t explain,” he said. “Growing up, you always think about playing in the championship game, but winning it is a whole different thing. It still hasn’t hit me yet. It’s coming to me though.”
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