However, the UK coach told Meeks' father, Orestes, to carefully monitor the workouts his son does for NBA teams.
"I told his Dad the most important thing is not promoting him, but to protect him," Calipari, a former head coach of the New Jersey Nets, said. "If the workouts are going well, fine. Keep doing them. If they are not, don't keep doing them. Don't leave a bad impression because those NBA guys get together and never forget that."
Calipari anticipates Orton being a "terrific player" and having no problems playing with returning star Patrick Patterson or Cousins at the same time.
"Orton has great size, long arms and is skilled. He can play inside or outside. He's a terrific passer," Calipari said. "He's not a guy you go, ‘Oh my gosh. He doesn't have the skills to be in this offense.' He does. He also has the skills where you can play two big guys (together). So does DeMarcus. You can play them together."
Calipari said he was watching how Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers is playing two bigger players together in the playoffs now.
"Doc is doing some things and we have talked a lot about this. He has run the dribble-drive," Calipari said. "We have an opportunity to play two big players at one time. Maybe we would play a little zone (defense). We could play two bigs yet still be fast. They both run, are aggressive and skilled. They do not have to catch the ball one foot from the basket to be effective."
ON BIG EXPECTATIONS
He says even though college basketball analyst Dick Vitale already has UK as one of the projected best teams in the nation next year — "and he never embellishes" — it's too early to be doing that.
"We will calm them down. It is not time yet for that," Calipari said.
He joked that some coaches already calling Kentucky a national title contender are trying "to divert attention" from their program.
"I have done this too long. It doesn't have any effect on me. It doesn't put more pressure on us. Can you do that at Kentucky? I am not buying that," he said. "Half the team will be new players that have never played a down of college basketball. The other half will never have played this style.
"We have a ways to go. This is going to be a step at a time. In November and December balls will fly everywhere and people will question how play. In January we will have a couple of breakout games. By February we will be running people into the ground and by March hopefully playing our best basketball."