Karyla Knight - Women's Basketball - Kansas Jayhawks

Karyla Knight

TITLE Assistant Coach


Karyla Knight is in her fourth season on the Kansas Women’s Basketball staff after joining Coach Brandon Schneider’s staff as an Assistant Coach in April 2021.

Kansas has reached the postseason in each of the Knight’s three seasons in Lawrence, including NCAA Tournament appearances in 2022 and 2024, and capturing the 2023 WNIT Championship. KU has won at least 20 games in each of the past three seasons, the longest such streak for the program since 2011-13.

The 2023-24 season saw Kansas earn three wins over Top 25 opponents and two wins over Top 10 opponents, both accomplishments happening for the first time since 1999-2000. The Jayhawks finished 20-13 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three seasons. KU picked up its first win over a Top 5 opponents since 2009 with an 87-66 victory over then-No. Baylor on Jan. 10, 2024, which was also KU’s first win over the Bears since 2014.

The Jayhawks were led by four All-Big 12 honorees, including First Team selections Taiyanna Jackson and S’Mya Nichols, along with Holly Kersgieter and Zakiyah Franklin, who earned honorable mention. Jackson was also named to the Big 12 All-Defensive Team for the third time and earned WBCA All-America Honorable Mention for the second-straight season. Following the season, she became KU’s first WNBA Draft selection since 2015 when she was picked in the second round by the Connecticut Sun.

The Jayhawks finished 25-11 in 2022-23, marking the sixth time in school history that the program reached 25 victories in a season, and first since 1996-97. KU had three players earn All-Big 12 recognition that season, including two First Team All-Big 12 selections in Taiyanna Jackson and Zakiyah Franklin. Knight (formerly Middlebrook) tutored Franklin as she led the Jayhawks in scoring and set new single-season school records for both free throw percentage and three-point field goal percentage. Jackson, meanwhile, had a breakout campaign and became the first KU player since 1982 to average a double-double for an entire season. Kansas has had six All-Big 12 selections during Knight’s two seasons, with Jackson, Franklin and Holly Kersgieter each earning consecutive honors from the conference.

In Knight’s first season in Lawrence, she assisted Schneider – the 2022 Big 12 Coach of the Year – during the Jayhawks breakthrough campaign in 2021-22. The Jayhawks finished the season with a record of 21-10, marking the program’s first 20-win season since 2010-11, and the Jayhawks had 20 wins during the regular season for the first time since 1999-2000. Kansas capped off the season with a berth in the 2022 NCAA Tournament, where KU earned the No. 8 seed in the Spokane Regional and defeated Georgia Tech, 77-58, in the opening round before falling to eventual regional champion Stanford in the second round.

Kansas had three players earn All-Big 12 recognition in Knight’s first season, including guard Zakiyah Franklin, an Honorable Mention All-Big 12 selection. Under Knight’s tutelage, Franklin moved into KU’s top 10 list for career assists and had the third-best single-season free throw shooting percentage in school history during her junior year.

Prior to Kansas, Knight served as an Assistant Coach at Grand Canyon University for the 2020-21 season. That year, GCU finished with a record of 18-7 and placed third in the Western Athletic Conference before advancing to the WAC Championship game. Knight also spent two seasons as an Assistant Coach at Evansville following her playing career at Alabama and Kansas State.

As a player, Knight was named a three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll member and she aided the Crimson Tide to its first-ever home win over Tennessee, ending a 42-game winless streak against the Lady Vols. As a graduate transfer at Kansas State, she propelled the 2016-17 team to a 23-11 overall record which included a win over Drake in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Knight also excelled in the classroom during her time as a Wildcat, being named to the Academic All-Big 12 Second Team.

A native of Blue Springs, Mo., Knight earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Alabama and a master’s degree in Academic Advising from Kansas State. She is married to D’Anthony Knight, a former assistant football strength and conditioning coach at Kansas who know serves as Assistant Director of Sport Performance at Wichita State.

Alma Mater: Alabama, 2013-16
Hometown: Blue Springs, Mo.

2021-Present, Kansas (Assistant Coach)
2020-21, Grand Canyon University (Assistant Coach)
2018-20, University of Evansville (Assistant Coach)

2016-17, Kansas State University (Grad Transfer)
2013-16, The University of Alabama