Bison men’s basketball assistant coach Joe Meehan was named to the 2016-2017 Under Armour 30-Under-30 honors list. The list recognizes the top young men’s college basketball coaches in the country.
Meehan played college basketball at Lebanon Valley College, where he was a three-year captain and three-time all-conference performer. He then played professionally in Switzerland while also coaching a semi-professional team there.
Upon returning to the United States, Meehan served as assistant coach under current Bison head coach Nathan Davis at Randolph-Macon College in Virginia from 2013 to 2015. When Davis was given the head coaching job for the Bison, he appointed Meehan as his manager of basketball operations. During the 2015-2016 season, Meehan coordinated team travel, camps, recruiting, and video editing. When Davis’s assistant coach from 2015-2016 accepted a position at Notre Dame, Meehan was offered the position and accepted.
“Being a basketball coach at Bucknell is a great privilege. It is a special place filled with special people that allow us to be successful year in and year out. The amount of support we receive from the student body, staff, and community is astounding. As a coach, you cannot ask for a better situation than that,” Meehan said.
This year, in his first season as assistant coach, Meehan helped lead the Orange and Blue to a Patriot League regular season championship, a Patriot League tournament championship, and a NCAA Tournament appearance. While recognizing the honor of being named to the 30-Under-30, Meehan gave credit to the rest of the coaching staff and to the players.
“The award is a nice honor, but in reality, it is just a reflection of Coach Davis’s mentorship and what our program has been able to accomplish, especially this year. The players put the time in and worked hard every day to reach our goal,” Meehan said.
Davis spoke highly of Meehan’s coaching abilities and his willingness to do whatever is needed for the team’s success.
“His greatest strength is his motivation to get whatever task is at hand done and done well. He has initiative,” Davis said. “He is deserving because he is not just a recruiter or an just a basketball mind. He can do everything from recruiting, to scouting, to skill instruction, to alumni relations.”
Meehan’s dedication to Bison basketball is evident in Davis’s evaluation, as well as in his own reflection on his favorite part of being a coach.
“My favorite part of coaching is getting to work and bond with the players. There is a unique relationship developed through the grind of a long season where stresses fluctuate day to day,” Meehan said. “It is a test of togetherness and toughness. Thus, when a team can come together at the end of the season to win a championship as we did this year, it does not get much more fulfilling than that.”
Ben Oberfeld ’17, who has worked with Meehan since Meehan arrived at the University, echoes the importance of player-coach bonding in Meehan’s coaching style.
“Coach Meehan is an excellent coach that pushes you to be your best while at the same time keeping a personal relationship with you. He walks the fine line between friend and coach better than any coach I have had,” Oberfeld said.