Shalee Lehning is an early achiever. Last season, as a rookie, she beat out both Ivory Latta and one-time WNBA All Star MVP Nikki Teasley for the starting point guard position on the Atlanta Dream. Despite missing the playoffs with a shoulder injury, she helped the Dream to one of the most remarkable turnarounds in WNBA history, a franchise-record 18 wins, and their first Eastern Conference playoff berth.
Today, Kansas State women's basketball head coach Deb Patterson announced that Lehning will be making her collegiate coaching debut as an assistant coach for the Wildcats. Lehning will replace Andria Jones, who stepped down to take a job in the private sector in October.
The All-American will be returning to her alma mater, where she holds the school record for career assists (800) and minutes played (4,271), ranks fourth four career rebounds (914), and 19th for career points (1,189). Lehning is the eighth guard in school history to register at least 200 points in every season of her career, and the first player in the Big 12 to record 1,000 career points, 900 career rebounds, and 800 career assists.
I am extremely excited for this unbelievable opportunity to coach at Kansas State University, said Lehning of her new assignment in a statement released by Kansas State. As a former player at K-State, I take great pride in this university and the womens basketball program. I have the utmost respect for Coach Patterson, her coaching staff and this program. I am honored to have the chance to help take our program to new heights.
Lehning will continue to play in the WNBA while also assisting the Wildcats. She is the second assistant coach in the Patterson era to coach and also play in the WNBA at the same time.