Mayberry will return to KU for 2024-25 season

photo by: Carter Gaskins/Special to the Journal-World

Kansas' Wyvette Mayberry (0) runs the offense against Oklahoma Saturday, March 2, 2024, at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas senior point guard Wyvette Mayberry will use her extra year of COVID-19 eligibility and return to the team next season, she announced on Instagram Thursday afternoon.

Mayberry had gone through senior-night festivities at the end of the season, casting some doubt on whether she would be back for a fifth year after spending two at Tulsa and two at KU. She dispelled that doubt in a short message just three days after the Jayhawks were eliminated from the NCAA Tournament, writing, “more work to be done, I’ll be back for my final season. let’s rock out.”

The 5-foot-7 guard saw some of her numbers take a small step back during KU’s 2023-24 season, but she still averaged 9.7 points, 2.4 assists, 2.4 rebounds and one steal per game while playing and starting all but one game for the Jayhawks and serving as a top defender.

Her return is significant news for a KU team that will nonetheless look dramatically different next season given that three fifth-year seniors who rank among the school’s all-time most productive players, Zakiyah Franklin, Taiyanna Jackson and Holly Kersgieter, have exhausted their eligibility.

Now, Mayberry and S’Mya Nichols will serve as the primary returnees for next year’s team. Nichols was one of the top freshmen in the Big 12 Conference and led the Jayhawks with 15.4 points per game.

Valuable bench piece Ryan Cobbins is also gone. Role players Skyler Gill, Danai Papadopoulou and Zsófia Telegdy all have additional eligibility; the rest of the roster is very young and inexperienced.

In addition, The Next reported Thursday that freshman center Paris Gaines has entered the transfer portal.

One plus for KU at the center spot is that it should get Nadira Eltayeb back next season after she tore her Achilles prior to the season. Head coach Brandon Schneider said on a January episode of his “Hawk Talk” radio show that Eltayeb “had the best summer of any returner in our program” prior to the injury.

“We really felt like we had a definite option at the 5 spot after Twin (Jackson),” he continued. “Nadira was really looking forward to being in that role and then transitioning into and understanding, ‘Hey, when Twin’s gone, I’m moving into that spot.'”

The Jayhawks may need to look in the transfer portal, though, for additional starting-caliber players alongside Mayberry and Nichols.

KU also signed three freshmen in November: Zoe Canfield, Carla Osma and Regan Williams.


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