LOS ANGELES -- Coach Mick Cronin has hired Rod Palmer as an assistant at UCLA, where he played for two years in the mid-1980s.
Palmer was an assistant at San Diego State last season after 11 years on the coaching staff at Long Beach State. Before that, he was head coach at Centennial High in nearby Compton for nine years and at Compton High for four years.
Palmer was on scholarship at UCLA and played in 46 games from 1985-87 before transferring to UC Irvine, where he graduated in 1990. He called it "an absolute thrill" to return to UCLA, where the 1987 team won the Pac-10 title.
Cronin said Thursday that he and Palmer met 20 years ago when Cronin was recruiting in Los Angeles. He cited Palmer's strong ties in Southern California as a reason for hiring him.