Dave Palmer was one of the greatest basketball players in Mercer High School history who in the early 1960s led the Mustangs to two straight state finals appearances, the first in school history.

He was a standout on the Mustangs teams from 1961-63 and went on to an outstanding career at West Virginia University.

As a junior in 1961-62, he scored 603 points including 19 in the state championship loss to Darby, 51-42. The team finished 26-5 and Dave was named second-team All-State and first-team All-District. He was MVP of the Mercer High Invitational tourney that season as well. He also lettered in cross country that year.

He was first-team All-State and All-District his senior year as he helped lead the Mustangs to the state finals for a second straight season. He led the team in scoring with 549 points, including a team-high 15 in another state finals defeat at the hands of Darby, 61-45. The Mustangs went 23-4 that year.

Dave was the leading scorer in Mercer County in his senior year and won the Hoyle Award at the annual prestigious Hoyle Tournament in Sharon. He was team MVP. He served as sports editor of the school yearbook.

He was inducted into the Mercer High School Athletic Hall of Fame both as an individual and team member.
He became the first player in Mercer history to earn a four-year scholarship to a Division I University. He had a stellar career at West Virginia, where he was leading scorer on the freshman team in 1964 and was a three-year varsity letterman.

He later served as a freshman assistant coach and recruiter for the Mountaineers after graduation.

Dave was head basketball coach at Woodsfield (Ohio) High School from 1974-77. His teams won three sectional titles and finished as district runners-up twice.