How JuJu Watkins' historic start ranks among USC greats and potential NCAA  records - Yahoo Sports

JuJu Watkins, a standout player for USC’s women’s college basketball team, recently engaged in a lively conversation with Paul George on his podcast “Podcast P with Paul George.”

During the discussion, George praised Watkins’ signature high bun hairstyle, suggesting it could become a trendsetter among girls. In a light-hearted response, Watkins countered, asserting that the bun transcends gender norms and can look “handsome and cute” on men as well.

“Men can wear buns too the bun can be ‘handsome and cute’,” Watkins said. “It’s co-ed.” (Timestamp: 4:20)

Reflecting on the origins of her distinctive hairstyle, Watkins shared that it was introduced to her by her mother during her high school days. Despite having various styling options available, Watkins has remained loyal to her iconic bun, a choice that even earned her a co-starring role in an AT&T commercial alongside NBA player Joel Embiid.

“I just think it looks good,” she explained on the podcast. “So, I just wear it. It’s been a thing since I’ve been doing it for a long time. My mom put me on.”

Watkins, hailing from Los Angeles, chose USC over offers from South Carolina and Stanford. She played a key role in propelling the Trojans to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament before their defeat against Connecticut.

USC Women's Basketball: JuJu Watkins Lands First Team All-American Honor -  Sports Illustrated USC Trojans News, Analysis and More

Despite her impressive achievements in NCAA Division I basketball, Watkins will have to wait until 2027 to meet the age requirement for the WNBA draft and become eligible. According to WNBA rules, players must either be 22 years old within the draft year or have completed four years of university education to be eligible. This age requirement has been a long-standing rule in the league’s collective bargaining agreement and has seen minimal opposition.

USC assistant coach Chris Koclanes, who has WNBA experience with the Connecticut Sun and LA Sparks, advocates for allowing players the option to pursue a professional WNBA career if they feel prepared and choose not to continue their education.

According to reports from the Los Angeles Times, changes to the league’s collective bargaining agreement, particularly regarding eligibility rules, may be on the horizon by 2026 if early negotiations occur.