Olivia Dunne, the talented gymnast from LSU, has become the latest addition to the lineup of Sports Illustrated swimsuit models. Boasting an impressive following of over 7 million on TikTok and another 4 million on Instagram, Dunne’s star power and dedication have propelled her to new heights.
Dunne, a 20-year-old gymnast, recently shared her remarkable journey to becoming a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model at the On3 NIL Elite Series in Nashville. Typically, swimsuit photoshoots span a week, but when Sports Illustrated approached her during the season, she was granted only a single day by her coach. Determined not to let this opportunity slip through her fingers, Dunne wasted no time and hopped on a plane to Puerto Rico, where she hoped to bask in a full 24 hours of sunshine.
Fortunately, her wish was granted as the radiant sun shone brightly during the photo shoot, allowing Dunne to capture the perfect shots. True to her commitment, she returned to LSU the very next day, reflecting her unwavering dedication to her sport and studies.
For Dunne, the chance to become a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model was nothing short of a dream come true. In a video posted on the publication’s Instagram page back in April, she expressed her gratitude, stating, “There’s a lot of young girls who look up to me, and I feel like a lot of young girls also follow Sports Illustrated. So, both of our brands, I think, align because we both want to inspire the younger generation.”
As a woman excelling in a traditionally male-dominated sports landscape, Dunne recognizes the significance of her position as a gymnast at the forefront of name, image, and likeness deals. She understands the importance of leveling the playing field and breaking stereotypes. While many may have expected athletes from mainstream sports like football, baseball, or basketball to lead the charge, Dunne’s emergence as a role model signifies a step in the right direction for female athletes.
Despite facing injury setbacks during her junior year, Dunne’s appearances garnered immense attention and played a pivotal role in LSU’s victories. Her resilience and tenacity have undoubtedly earned her a place among the most respected athletes in the gymnastics community.