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Chris Walker has reportedly been hired as Cal basketball's third assistant by Wyking Jones

Cal head men's basketball coach Wyking Jones has reportedly hired former Texas Tech interim head coach Chris Walker as its third assistant coach.

UPDATE 4:14 p.m.: A Cal official has confirmed the hire. It will be announced on Tuesday.

According to a report by Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports, California has hired Chris Walker as the third assistant coach under new head men's basketball coach Wyking Jones, joining associate head coach Tim O'Toole and Los Angeles Lakers assistant Theo Robertson, who will join the program after the conclusion of the NBA season.

Walker, 47, has deep ties to Jones, having coached the Bears' new head coach at Loyola Marymount during his first college coaching gig, and then helping Jones get an assistant job at New Mexico, a job he vacated when he headed to Villanova in 2007. 

Walker was also the associate head coach at Pepperdine from 1999-2000, just before Jones arrived in Malibu for his second assistant job from 2002-06.

Walker, a point guard for Villanova from 1988-92, started 96 games at point guard and helped the Wildcats to two NCAA Tournament and two National Invitation Tournament appearances.

The Houston native served as the interim head coach at Texas Tech during the 2012-13 season, taking the job just three weeks before the start of official practices in October, following the resignation of Billy Gillispie. He went 11-20. 

Athletic director Kirby Hocutt, immediately following Walker's stint, said that there was "nothing more he could have done."

"I think the world of Chris Walker," Hocutt told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. "But the proven track record of success is something Tubby Smith brought to us that no other candidate did. Chris Walker will have the opportunity to be a head coach, and when that day comes, Chris Walker is going to be a very successful head coach and do a tremendous job.”

Early in his career, Walker directed the T-Mac All-Star AAU program, and has deep recruiting ties in Texas. Currently an on-air analyst for CBS, Walker also has a radio program in Houston.

Walker served as an assistant at Loyola Marymount from 1992-96, before moving on to Vanderbilt as associate head coach from 1996-99, and then Pepperdine. He then moved on to Villanova as an assistant from 2000-01, and then Massachusetts (2001-05), New Mexico (2007-09) and Villanova again (2009-11), before landing at Texas Tech in 2011. He last coached in 2013.

Having been a head coach, Walker provides extensive X's and O's support for Jones, who has never been a collegiate head coach. Like Jones, he has experience in the AAU world, with recruiting contacts primarily in Texas.

Like new head football coach Justin Wilcox, Jones now will have two former head coaches on his staff, in Walker and O'Toole, who served as the head coach of his alma mater, Fairfield, from 1998 through 2006.


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