March 10, 2008
Walker served as an assistant coach with the Wildcats for three seasons from 2003-05, helping to lead the program to thee NCAA Tournament appearances, including a trip to the Elite Eight in 2005. He left Arizona after the 2005 season to become the women's volleyball head coach at UC Davis, where he has coached the past two seasons. Walker joins Rubio and assistant coach Allison Napier on the coaching staff.
"I am very excited to have Steve rejoin our staff here at Arizona," Rubio said. "Our program is very fortunate to get that caliber of coach with that much experience here to help our team reach the next level."
At UC Davis, Walker became the Aggies' eighth head volleyball coach, guiding the program through its final year of reclassification to NCAA Division I status in 2006, and during its first year of membership in the Big West Conference this past season. During his tenure at UC Davis, Walker was selected to coach the Northern California Volleyball Association Youth Division team at the Global Challenge in Maribor, Slovenia during July of 2006. Last year, he was invited back to coach the NCVA Youth team at the USA Volleyball High Performance Championship in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Walker also served as a volunteer assistant coach during Arizona's 2000 Pac-10 title season.
"There is certainly a high level of familiarity with Steve, and I think that will help him make a seamless transition in coaching our team," Rubio added. "Any time you can get an assistant coach with head coaching experience your program will benefit immensely on and off the court. Steve's wealth of knowledge and experience will help each player in our program improve significantly."
In between his previous two stops in Tucson, Walker spent two years as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama during the 2001-02 seasons.
A collegiate volleyball player at Long Beach State, Walker finished his career as the school's all-time leader in assists per game. The starting setter for two seasons, he was named AVCA All-America and All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in 1995, after leading the NCAA in assists and assists per game.
Walker was selected to play for the U.S. at the World University Games in 1995 and was the team captain for Arizona's back-to-back NIRSA club national championship teams in 1999 and 2000. He was named the MVP at the 2000 championship event. Walker is also a four-time bronze medalist at the U.S. Volleyball Open Adult Championships.
Walker began his coaching career in 1997 as the boy's and girl's head varsity coach at Westminster High School in Westminster, Calif. He also served as a volunteer coach at Golden West College.
From 1995-98, Walker was the head boy's and girl's coach for the Surf City Volleyball Club in Huntington Beach, Calif. Under his guidance, the boy's 18 and under team was ranked second in Southern California, placed second at the regional championships and was third at junior nationals. A total of nine of his club players went on to play at NCAA Division I schools.
A native of Newport Beach, Calif., Walker graduated from Long Beach State with a degree in kinesiology in 1996 and received his M.A. in teaching and teacher education from Arizona in 2000.