Basketball: Cori Close announces staff

UCLA women's basketball coach Cori Close has hired Shannon Perry, Tony Newnan and Jenny Roulier-Huth as assistant coaches, the school announced Friday. Pam Walker, the team's director of operations for the past three seasons, will continue in the same role.

Perry, a Southern California native, is a former USC assistant who most recently spent six years coaching at Duke. Newnan coached at Westmont College in Santa Barbara the last eight seasons. Roulier-Huth played for Team USA in 2001.

"I had three priorities when hiring a coaching staff," Close said in a statement. “I needed people who knew how to relate with and invest in the lives of our student-athletes. I needed people who could break down and truly teach the game and develop players. And I needed three people who can recruit. It's rare to find one person who possesses all three characteristics, but I found three, all of whom could be associate head coaches or head coaches at other programs. All three passionately bought into the unique program we are creating at UCLA. I've been watching assistants and planning for my first staff for years, and I got my three lottery picks."

Close replaces former head coach Nikki Caldwell, who was hired at LSU in early April.

"Parents will know their kids are being invested in and cared for, as well as being developed on the court," Close said. "Players can know that they will be pushed and challenged in order to help them grow in ways they didn't even know they could. Their dreams can come true under this staff, and they will be equipped and prepared for a pro career as well as life beyond basketball."