Seimone Augustus dominated college basketball and has done the same in the WNBA. The former LSU Tiger received swept nearly every national award, as well as being the first female athlete to have her number retired by at Louisiana State University.
Augustus didn’t just appear out of nowhere and become one of the college basketball’s best players when she arrived on campus in 2002, though. She had already received a reputation as one of the best up and coming women’s basketball players in the world from an early age.
Before her freshman year of high school, she appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated for Women with the question: “Is She the Next Michael Jordan?” The Baton Rouge star out of Capitol High School was one of the top players in the country and stayed home to play for Louisiana State University, where she would more than live up to the hype.
LSU Lady Tigers (2002-2006)
In four seasons, Augustus not only led the Lady Tigers to the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament, but she did it three-straight times. She played in 140 games and averaged 19.3 points, 5.2 rebounds, and two assists per game. Her best scoring season came in 2005-06 when she averaged just over 22 points per game.
Her first year on campus was the only SEC Championship she would win, though the LSU women’s basketball team lost to Tennessee twice in the conference title game by a combined three points.
In both her junior and senior seasons, she won the Wade Trophy, Naismith Player of the Year, John R. Wooden Award, each given to the National Player of the Year. She was also a two-time All American and named the SEC Player of the Year in both of those seasons.
In 2010, when her number 33 was retired, she was the first female athlete in school history to have that honor.
Minnesota Lynx (2006-Present)
When you are named the best player in the country not once, but twice, the standard is high and would be tough to meet by anyone. But Augustus, once again, exceed expectations since being selected first overall in the 2006 WNBA Draft by the Minnesota Lynx.
She had an immediate impact on the league, being selected as a reserve in the WNBA All-Star Game as a rookie. That impact didn’t translate immediately to her team’s record, having the worst in the league, but team success eventually followed. As a rookie, Augustus averaged 21.9 points per game, second in the league to Diana Taurasi, and was named the WNBA Rookie of the Year.
She improved her scoring numbers in her second season, averaging a career-high 22.6 points and being named an All-Star for the second time, but her team still struggled to win games.
In 2009, her fourth season in the league, she suffered a season-ending injury when she tore her ACL. The 2010 season would be plagued by injury as well, but she was still able to play in most of the Lynx’s games. But that would be the last season for a while when Minnesota struggled.
When Augustus returned in 2011, she had the help of Lindsey Whalen and three-time Wade Trophy winner Maya Moore on the Lynx. With Augustus leading the team at 16.2 ppg, she made the All-Star game for the third time, and Minnesota finished the regular season at 27-7 on their way to a sweep in the WNBA Finals over the Atlanta Dream. Augustus was named Finals MVP after scoring 36 points in Game 2, the second-most in Finals history.
In 2015, the Lynx added center Sylvia Fowles, who Augustus played with at LSU, to assist in winning more championships.
Over a seven year period beginning in 2011, the Lynx appeared in the Finals six times, capturing the WNBA Championship in four of those years. Augustus has been in the top three in scoring for the team every season since being drafted and has made been selected as an All-Star eight times. She’s a five-time Second Team All-WNBA and one-time All-WNBA First Team performer
U.S. Women’s Basketball Team
In 2006, Augustus was a part of the Team USA for the first time during the FIBA World Championships in 2006 in Brazil. Since then, she has been a part of the United State National Team four more times.
In her first chance to represent her country, the team won bronze, but the next time she played in the FIBA World Championships would be in 2014 in Turkey where they would win the gold medal.
2008 in Beijing is the first Olympic team Augustus would be a part of and she has done it two more times in the 2012 London games and 2016 Rio games. In each of the three Olympics she has been a part of, the USA basketball team has won gold in each one.
Few LSU Tigers have the resume that Seimone Augustus has. And by the time she’s done, few athletes ever will.
This post was originally published July 18, 2019.