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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Part-time athlete, full-time mother

Curtyce+Knox+and+her+daughter+Haven+Short+wait+for+her+name+to+be+called+in+senior+recognition.
Photo by Morgan Engel

Curtyce Knox and her daughter Haven Short wait for her name to be called in senior recognition.

On the court, Curtyce Knox is known as a teammate, competitor and leader. Off the court, she is known as Mom. In the offseason before her junior season, Knox received the life-changing news that she was expecting her first child.
As Knox dealt with the early parts of her pregnancy, she turned to an unlikely person for advice and guidance — Jennifer Jones. Jones, the women’s basketball strength and conditioning coach, was the first person to know about Knox’s pregnancy.
“When I found out, I actually told our strength and conditioning coach first,” Knox said. “She really helped me a lot, like going to the doctor and getting checkups.”
Jones said she felt Knox came to her for advice from the start because Jones had been so open with telling Knox and the team her experience of being a student athlete in college while having a baby.
“I had my oldest son when I was in college and was playing sports,” Jones said. “I think she was looking for someone to give her unbiased guidance on how to proceed through. I was a listening ear for her, helped her make decisions on going to go see the doctor, when were we going to tell her mom, both of us went to go talk to Coach Blair together. I was kind of someone that she could lean on and she knew wasn’t going to judge.”
When Knox and Jones began preparing to tell the team, the one thing Knox feared the most was in the eyes of her teammates she would be a disappointment. However, the reaction she got from them was the complete opposite.
“The first thing that went through my head was like, ‘I’m letting them down, I’m not going to be able to play next season. Jordan [Jones] is not going to have a backup point guard.’ But they have always supported me and it made it so much easier,” Knox said.
After getting over the challenge of telling her teammates the news, Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair was next on Knox’s list of people who needed to know.
“He handled it so well, he made me feel comfortable, which was a big thing for me,” Knox said. “He told me I’d always have a support system here at Texas A&M from the coaches and my teammates as well — that meant a lot to me.”
Now Knox has had her daughter, Haven, in her life for almost a year and a half while playing her fifth season with the Aggies after redshirting her freshman year. Knox has earned her degree in recreation, parks and tourism science and is currently in graduate school. All while parenting a 17-month-old toddler.
On the hardwood, Knox is having the best season of her career. As the Aggies’ starting point guard, Knox is averaging a nation-leading 9.4 assists per game, nearly two more assists than the next player in Division-I women’s basketball. Knox said for the first time since she’s donned the maroon and white, she is in the best physical state.
“I feel that I am in the best condition that I’ve ever been in since I’ve been at Texas A&M,” Knox said. “I just have more confidence knowing that I’m the only point guard on the team. It’s my job to get things done on the court, they’re looking to me for leadership on this team this year.”
Knox said the reason she is having the best season was due to the confidence that Blair has instilled in her by trusting her to lead the team.
“My confidence is off the charts,” Knox said. “Coach Blair has a lot to do with it. He really shows me he believes in my game, my leadership and my role on this team. That has helped me during the game to know that he believes in me.”
Blair said Knox is one of the most productive fifth-year players he has ever coached in the span of his 31-year career. Blair said Knox having a child has not only helped her grow mentally and physically strong off the court but it has inadvertently affected her performance on the court.
“She is delivering like no other fifth-year senior has ever delivered for me at any of my stops along the way,” Blair said. “She is a quiet leader, she likes to lead by example … When she came into her senior year, she knew we had no backup at the point so mentally, health wise, strength wise, she had to be at her best. She hasn’t missed one practice, one possession because of injury — knock on wood.”
The maturity exuded from Knox on the court has been beneficial for A&M on the court in crunch time situations. Texas A&M guard Danni Williams said Knox’s confidence is something which she is thankful for when the game is on the line.
 “She’s just so calm that makes you feel calm on the court,” Williams said. “We could be down by two with 30 seconds left and she just has this sense of, ‘Everything is going to be okay’ even when we’re up like that and its close. She’s just so calm and mellow, you always know what you’re going to get from her. That always helps us and our other teammates because you can count on her to be positive and just keep going.”
As the Aggies come to the tail end of the regular season and begin preparing for the postseason, Knox said her success both on and off the court is because she has a strong support system in the stands and beside her on the court.
“I have so much help here it’s crazy,” Knox said. “I’m just so blessed to be around so many people who care about me and my child. I really don’t think that I’ve experienced the hard times of having a child because I’ve always had someone who will call me and tell me ‘I will watch Haven if you need a nap after practice.’ I just really appreciate all the help I’ve gotten since she was born.”

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  • Senior point guard Curtyce Knox leads the nation, NCAA, in assists at 9.4 a game.

    Photo by Morgan Engel
  • Curtyce Knox celebrated her Senior Day alongside her brother Tristan Tims, his

    fiancée Claudia, her fiancé Kevin Short, younger brother Jordan Knox, mother Deneyce Knox, daughter Haven Short and head coach Gary Blair.

    Photo by Morgan Engel
  • Senior point guard Curtyce Knox leads the nation with 9.2 assists per game.

    Photo by Morgan Engel
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