Spartans announce another impressive recruiting class.
Game one will take place at on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Under Meade’s tutelage, an MSU pitcher has led the Big Ten in ERA in both overall and conference games the last two seasons. Walter Borkovich led the B1G with a 2.01 overall ERA and a 0.64 ERA in league games in 2017, while Dakota Mekkes posted a 1.23 ERA in conference contests in 2016. In fact, in his 10 seasons as a pitching coach, a pitcher under Meade’s coaching has led their respective league in ERA in five of the 10 seasons.
Additionally, MSU has posted its top three strikeout totals in school history in the last three seasons with 409 strikeouts in 2015, 466 punchouts in 2016 and 420 in 2017.
Meade mentored the Big Ten’s top pitching staff in 2016 as the Spartans led the league in ERA (2.75), opponent batting average (.234) and runs allowed (199). The 2.75 ERA was third best in the nation and is the fifth lowest by a Spartan staff in program history. For the second straight year, MSU established a new strikeout mark as the 2016 squad racked up 466 Ks.
Meade helped Dakota Mekkes become one of the nation’s top relievers as the righty earned NCBWA All-America honors after finishing the season ranked first nationally in Ks per nine innings (15.16) and hits per nine innings (4.11).
During Meade’s first season in 2015, the Spartans established a then school record 409 strikeouts. The pitching staff also picked-off 24 runners - third most in the nation. Individually, reliever Joe Mockbee’s team-leading 1.78 ERA was the lowest by a Spartan since 1974.
Under Meade’s tutelage, the MTSU pitching staff lowered its team ERA in each of his two seasons at the school. In 2014, the Blue Raiders posted their lowest team ERA since 2001 (4.10) as they finished fourth in their inaugural season in Conference USA.
Meade mentored MTSU’s Zac Curtis, who was selected in the sixth round of the MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks and is currently with the Seattle Mariners. Curtis, a first-team All-Conference USA selection, ended the regular season as the nation’s leader in strikeouts with 136.
In 2013, Meade oversaw closer Daniel Palo post a 2.64 ERA with eight saves. Palo later went on to be drafted in the 27th round by the Colorado Rockies.
Prior to joining the staff at MTSU, Meade worked for five seasons at Eastern Illinois, first as a graduate assistant and then as assistant coach in 2009. EIU posted one of the Ohio Valley Conference’s best rotations during his time at the school. The Panthers sported the best team ERA in the OVC in four of his five years - 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012 - while finishing second in 2009.
Meade assisted in coaching the Panthers to the 2009 OVC regular-season title and a 36-14 record. The year prior, EIU captured the 2008 OVC Tournament title and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in school history.
During his tenure at EIU, Meade saw a number of his pitchers rack up All-OVC accolades in addition to being selected in the MLB Draft. In 2010, Josh Mueller was drafted in the 13th round of the MLB Draft by the Colorado Rockies, while teammate Mike Recchia signed as a free agent with the New York Yankees. Tyler Kehrer, who led the OVC in strikeouts and opponent batting average in 2009, became the highest drafted EIU player since 1988, as he was taken 48th overall by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in Compensation Round A.
Meade joined the coaching staff at EIU after his playing career at the University of Louisville. With the Cardinals, Meade anchored a pitching staff that helped lead Louisville to the 2007 College World Series. The left-handed pitcher recorded nine wins in 2007 and limited opposing batters to a .247 average. He concluded his career with a 16-7 record, including a 5-1 mark in conference action.
The native of Louisville, Kentucky, earned a bachelor’s degree in sports administration from Louisville in 2007 and completed a master’s degree in kinesiology and sports studies (sports management) in the summer of 2009 from EIU.
Meade and his wife, Jesse, have a one child, Kasen.
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