VERMILLION, S.D.—University of South Dakota athletic director David Herbster has announced the hiring of Kayla Karius as the 11th women’s basketball head coach of the Coyotes.
Karius will be formally introduced at a press conference at 11 a.m. Monday in the DakotaDome Club on USD’s campus. The press conference is open to the public and will be streamed live on social media. Herbster and Karius will not be available for comment until that time.
Karius takes the helm of a Coyote squad fresh off the first Sweet 16 appearance in program history. A familiar face to the program, Karius (formerly Tetschlag) served as an assistant to Dawn Plitzuweit for two seasons from 2016-18. In her two seasons at USD, the Coyotes compiled a 52-16 record with a pair of Women’s National Invitation Tournament berths. The Coyotes won the 2017-18 Summit League regular season title and became the first Summit champion to go undefeated in league play in 24 years. Karius received the WBCA’s Thirty Under 30 award in 2018.
A key recruiter in the Midwest, Karius has served as the recruiting coordinator at all four stops in her coaching career – Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Drake. Her recruiting classes at South Dakota included 2022 Summit League Player of the Year Chloe Lamb, three-time Summit Defensive Player of the Year Hannah Sjerven, two-time all-league pick Liv Korngable, Monica Arens, Claudia Kunzer, Regan Sankey, and Allison Peplowski.
Karius spent three seasons at Wisconsin and last season on the bench at Drake. The Bulldogs won 20 games and reached the WNIT’s round of 16. Karius worked with first-team all-Missouri Valley picks Grace Berg and Megan Meyer.
A native of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, Karius graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay in 2011 with a bachelor’s of business administration with a marketing emphasis. Karius, a standout on the Phoenix basketball team, was the 2011 Horizon League Player of the Year. She led Green Bay to four Horizon League titles, three NCAA Tournaments and the NCAA Sweet 16 her senior year. She received the Horizon League Cecil N. Colman Medal of Honor at the conclusion of her playing career.
Prior to entering the coaching profession, Karius spent four seasons playing professionally abroad. Her stops included Germany, Luxembourg and Belgium. She averaged a double-double and consistently ranked among her respective league’s top-three for points and rebounds.
Karius and her husband, Rick, have two sons, Treyton and Macklin.