DES MOINES, Iowa – Former Texas A&M and Minnesota assistant coach Bill Walker has joined the Drake University men's basketball program as an assistant coach, head coach Ray Giacoletti announced Friday.
The veteran coach brings more than 25 years of experience to the Drake staff, has coached more than 50 future professionals and five of his former student-athletes – DeAndre Jordan, Kris Humphries, Joel Przybilla, Khris Middleton and Donald Sloan – have been on active NBA rosters this season.
"Coach Giacoletti and I have known each other for a long time and there is no one that I respect more in the business," Walker said. "Coming to Drake is a perfect match for me and my family. I know that there are great things ahead for the program with Coach Giacoletti's leadership and the commitment and passion Drake has for basketball."
Walker returns to the coaching ranks after most recently serving as an assistant on Mark Turgeon's staff at Texas A&M from 2008-11 following a season (2007-08) in an administrative role. He spent the last two seasons serving as a scout for the NBA's New Orleans Hornets.
"I've known Bill since the early 1990s and he is someone I have the utmost trust in and respect for," Giacoletti said. "Bill was the top assistant at Minnesota for seven years. He knows this area very well and will be invaluable in our recruiting efforts. He's a veteran basketball coach that has drawn a tremendous wealth of experience from great coaches in his career."
During his four years at Texas A&M he oversaw the development of three future NBA players in DeAndre Jordan, Khris Middleton and Donald Sloan as the Aggies went 97-40 and made four straight NCAA appearances.
As an assistant at Minnesota from 1998-07, Walker was responsible for recruiting Big Ten Freshman of the Year Kris Humphries, who was a first-round lottery pick by the Utah Jazz in 2005. He also recruited 2005 first-team All-Big Ten performer Vincent Grier and the 2001 recruiting class that included 2002 Big Ten Freshman of the Year Rick Rickert. That class was ranked among the top 10 in the nation by many publications.