SAN LUIS OBISPO – The future of the Cal Poly men's basketball team's frontcourt play was strengthened on Tuesday afternoon with the announcement by sixth-year head coach Joe Callero and the Mustang Athletics Department that 6-9 forward and Gonzaga transfer Luke Meikle has joined the program for the 2014-15 season. Meikle will redshirt the upcoming year due to NCAA transfer rules, but enjoy three remaining years of eligibility beginning with the 2015-16 season.
"We're looking forward to working with Luke during his redshirt year," said Callero, who guided Cal Poly to its first Big West Conference championship last season and an NCAA Tournament second round appearance. "He has the ability to shoot, drive on an opponent and post up and has a good basketball IQ. He'll be a versatile four man like Chris Eversley. Our future remains bright with the addition of a quality student-athlete like Luke."
A native of Tacoma, Wash., and graduate of Bellarmine Prep, Meikle made 15 appearances for Gonzaga last season. His leading performance as a true freshman for the Bulldogs was a four-point, two-block effort during Gonzaga's 91-81 victory against Arkansas at the 2013 Maui Invitational. He also grabbed a career-high four rebounds in a 93-61 win against Colorado State.
A three-year starter at Bellarmine Prep, Meikle averaged 15.0 points and 9.0 rebounds as a senior to earn Narrows League 4A Player of the Year praise. Also an All-Narrows League first team selection and a two-time Tacoma News-Tribune All-Area team member, Meikle averaged a 14.0-point, 10.0-rebound double-double as a junior.
Meikle joins a Mustang program coming off of the most notable season in team history. Seeded seventh for the 2014 Big West Tournament, Cal Poly became the lowest seeded team in the history of the tournament to win the competition. The Mustangs then ousted fellow No. 16 seed Texas Southern during the March 19 First Four in Dayton, Ohio, to claim the program's first NCAA Division I Tournament victory and the program's first postseason win in 32 years.
Despite the season coming to a close with a March 21 loss to top-seeded Wichita State in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, the 2013-14 Mustang squad finished the year ranked fifth nationally in fewest turnovers per game (8.9) and 37th in points allowed per game (63.6).