Former Texas associate head volleyball coach joins Penn State staff

Matt Warden

After serving five years as the Associate Head Coach to Jerritt Elliott at Texas, Salima Rockwell is returning to her alma mater.

Penn State University announced on Thursday that Rockwell, who was a three-time All-American setter for the Nittany Lions from 1991-94, will assume the position of Associate Head Coach for the 2014 season.

Penn State head coach Russ Rose knows that Rockwell is one of the best assistant coaches in the country today and couldn’t pass up the chance to add her to the staff.

"We're very happy with Salima and her family's decision to return to Penn State," Rose said. "We'd like to welcome Salima, her husband Jeff and their two children to the Penn State community. I also want to thank our SWA, Charmelle Green and our athletic director, Dr. Dave Joyner for their work in making this opportunity possible."

The Pittsburgh native served as the captain for the US National Team in 1997 and 1998 and still ranks Top 10 in Penn State history for assists and digs. She began her coaching career as an assitant at Pittsburgh University in 2001.

In addition to serving as an assistant coach in her five years on the Fort Acres, Rockwell also worked as a recruiting coordinator, helping to bring in the No. 2 recruiting class in 2012.

Rockwell returns to Penn State after serving as an assistant coach for the team from 2005-2008.

The Longhorns will hate to see her go but the opportunity makes a lot of sense for a young coach on the rise.

First and foremost, we are very excited for Salima to undertake this role at her alma mater,” Elliott said. “She's a legend at Penn State, and this is a position that makes sense for her and the Nittany Lions program.”