Former El Camino High basketball standout Travis Gilley has transferred from the Air Force Academy to U.S. International, where he will redshirt the remainder of the 1990-1991 season then join the Gulls as a freshman guard next season.
As a senior at El Camino last year, Gilley averaged 24 points a game and shot 87% from the free-throw line. He led the Wildcats to a 68-65 victory over University City in the San Diego Section Division II championship game and was named to the Division 2-A all-section team.
Gilley was recruited by the University of San Diego and Colorado State. He said San Diego State showed some interest, but USIU never recruited him. Gilley, who is 6-foot-3, said he harbored no ill feelings toward Air Force when he withdrew at the beginning of November.
“It was too big an opportunity to pass up,” Gilley said. “But that place is definitely for some people, but not for others. I’m glad I went. I grew up so much in five months.”
Gilley, a talented outside shooter who scored 89 three-point shots at El Camino last season, must sit out the winter, spring and fall quarters at USIU, but will become eligible just before the Gulls’ 1991-92 season opener. He was with the team during its 114-104 loss Saturday to Chico State.
USIU Coach Gary Zarecky said Gilley will bring something his team has lacked through a 1-6 start this season: scoring and leadership at point guard.
“I think he’s a good catch for us,” Zarecky said. “He was recruited by a lot of Division I schools. He’s something we were looking for nationwide, but was right in our back yard. He’s a local proven talent. My priority is to keep the top local kids (in San Diego) and to play them.”
Said Gilley: “I’ve always wanted to play this (fast-breaking) style. I wanted to come back to San Diego. (USIU was) the most interested. They have a lot of potential.”