College - USC
Karleen Thompson was announced as head coach and general manager of the Houston Comets on February 14, 2007. Thompson recently completed her second season as an assistant coach with the Comets after being named to her position on January 24, 2005.
Prior to joining the Comets, Thompson spent eight years in the Los Angeles Sparks organization. In 2004, Thompson served as interim co-head coach of the Sparks, along with Ryan Weisenberg, after Michael Cooper stepped down as head coach to join the Denver Nuggets of the NBA. She helped guide Los Angeles to an 11-3 record over the final 14 games of the 2004 regular season, clinching the best overall mark (25-9) in the WNBA. Thompson, who joined the Sparks organization in 1997, was promoted to an assistant coach prior to the 2002 campaign.
In addition to earning a pair of WNBA Championships (2001, 2002) with the Sparks, Thompson served as an assistant coach for the WNBA Western Conference All-Star Team on two occasions (2002, 2003). Thompson was also an assistant coach for the WNBA Select Team that captured second place in the FIBA Women’s World Cup 2003, which was held in Samara, Russia. Thompson also served as an assistant coach for Spartak Moscow in the Moscow region (2006-07).
As a player, Thompson was recruited out of Junior College in 1993 by the University of Southern California and then-Head Coach Marianne Stanley, who is currently an assistant coach with the New York Liberty. Under former Phoenix Mercury Head Coach Cheryl Miller, Thompson went on to be a two-time letter winner at guard during her career (1993-94, 1994-95) with the Lady Trojans. Thompson also played on the 1993-94 USC team that included Sparks center Lisa Leslie and Comets forward Tina Thompson. She graduated in 1996 from USC with a double-major in psychology and sociology before moving on to work with Gatorade in the Sports Marketing Department.
Thompson began her collegiate career at Contra Costa College in Northern California, where she led her team to a conference title in basketball and became the state triple jump champion. She was also named a Junior
College Kodak All-American in basketball and was inducted into the Junior College Hall of Fame.
A Texas native, Thompson was a highly recruited three-sport athlete in basketball, volleyball and track out of Snyder (Texas) High School. She was a High School All-American in all three sports at Snyder and was one of the top recruits out of the state of Texas in track and volleyball. Thompson is also the proud mother of two daughters, Ayesha and Keisha.