Posted on October 9, 2013 at 10:01 PM
Wednesday, Oct 9 at 10:01 PM
MOSCOW, Idaho – After wrapping up a 14-year professional playing career, including eight NBA seasons, Milt Palacio has joined the Idaho men’s basketball coaching staff as Director of Player Development.
Palacio, who began his professional career with the Vancouver Grizzlies in 1999 and played in the NBA until 2006, spent the previous six seasons playing professionally in Europe. The former point guard is reunited with Idaho head coach Don Verlin, who was an assistant at Colorado State during part of Palacio’s collegiate career with the Rams.
“I’ve stayed in touch with Milt throughout the years since he played for us at Colorado State,” Verlin said. “We’ve kept that relationship. He called and was deciding if he was going to play one more season or get into coaching, and it just happened to work out that I had an opening on my staff and it worked out perfectly.”
Palacio’s duties will include helping with academics and mentoring Idaho’s players off the court, while also assisting Verlin with breaking down film and game preparation.
“He’ll do a number of things, but probably most importantly is mentoring our young guys,” Verlin said. “Because it’s a non-coaching position, his impact will be more off the court. Teaching kids first and foremost about taking care of academics, and helping guys with the finer points of the game of basketball from a mental standpoint.”
Verlin also hopes Palacio’s work ethic rubs off on the young Idaho team.
“I hope they take what he did because he worked his tail off,” Verlin said. “I remember when we were recruiting him out of junior college he averaged six points per game, then every year he got better and better and was able to make it to the NBA.”
Palacio earned team MVP honors for Partizan, Serbia in 2008. He is a native of Los Angeles, Calif.