Texans land former LSU guard Caleb Starks

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STEPHENVILLE – Tarleton head coach Billy Gillispie announced the signing of LSU guard Caleb Starks to a National Letter of Intent to join Tarleton Men’s Basketball next season.

Starks, a 6-foot-3 guard from Lafayette, Louisiana, will join the Texans after redshirting last season for LSU. Starks played his freshman season at Northwestern State in Natchitoches, La. and transferred during his sophomore campaign to play for his father who is the coach at LSU Eunice.

Starks becomes Gillispie’s fourth recruit to sign with the Texans, joining Tre Gipson, Shakur Daniel, and Heritier Ngalamulume.

“First, I would like to thank God for giving me this opportunity to play here at Tarleton,” said Starks. “I’m excited to be coached by Billy Gillispie and his new coaching staff. It’s an honor to be a part of Tarleton’s debut as a Division I university and to compete in the WAC.

“Coach G is a winning coach and I believe he can lead us to a conference championship. Here at Tarleton, I am looking forward to accomplishing great things both on and off the court. I’m excited to meet my new family and to achieve great things.”

While redshirting as a junior at LSU, Starks was able to practice with the Tigers as the team went 21-10 and finished second in the SEC standings.

“We are very lucky and proud to have Caleb Starks join our basketball program,” said Gillispie.  He is a tremendous person, student, and player and we look forward to him making an immediate impact as we play in Division I basketball.

“Caleb has a vast array of skills, is ultra-competitive, and has experience at the highest level of collegiate basketball. He should be a fun player to watch for the Tarleton faithful.”

At LSU Eunice in 2018-19, Starks reunited with his father Byron Starks, who was an accomplished basketball player himself at UL-Lafayette, where he led his team to two NCAA Tournaments and is in the school’s athletics Hall of Fame. Caleb also played for his father all four years in high school when he coached at Lafayette Christian Academy. LSUE was in its first year of playing basketball and Starks appeared in 26 games with 25 starts. Starks averaged 13.1 points and made 33 3-pointers as a sophomore while claiming first team All-LCCAC honors. He also posted 3.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game. Starks scored a season-high 25 points against South Arkansas Tech.

“Tarleton is getting a winner, which I think it most important,” said his father and former coach Byron Starks. “Caleb is a high-character person and is going to come in and work day in and day out because he’s a gym rat who loves the game. As a coach’s kid, he’ll do whatever it takes to help the team and program win. Caleb is going to take care of his business in the classroom and be one of the most dependable players that Coach Gillispie can have in his program.”

During his freshman season at Northwestern State, Starks appeared in 27 games and averaged 1.6 points and 1.1 rebounds. He recorded three starts and registered 9.5 minutes per game. He scored a season-high six points at Stephen F. Austin.

While playing as a co-team captain his senior season in high school, Starks led Lafayette Christian Academy to the 2017 Division IV state championship with a 27-3 record. He was named second team all-state after averaging 12.2 points. During his four-year high school career, Starks made the state tournament Final Four all four years with two state finals berths. Starks never lost a district game during his four varsity seasons while claiming all-district honors three times. Starks also excelled in the classroom as a National Honor Society member.


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