Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (CMS) received 73 total points and is picked to finish first in the 2017-18 Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Men's Basketball Preseason Poll in a vote conducted by the league's men's basketball coaches.
CMS received eight first place votes en route to 73 points out of a possible 81 points. Pomona-Pitzer followed in second with one first place vote and 68 total points. Chapman (54 points) and Cal Lutheran (51 points) ranked third and fourth respectively, while Whittier (45 points) edged Redlands (43 points) for the fifth spot.
In seventh was La Verne (34 points), while Occidental and Caltech registered 22 and 15 points respectively to round out the preseason vote.
The 2016-17 season featured a competitive SCIAC slate that saw CMS post a 13-3 record in league action to highlight a 23-5 overall record. Cal Lutheran finished second with a 12-4 mark in conference competition, while La Verne and Pomona-Pitzer each posted a league tally of 10-6.
The Stags, led by reigning SCIAC Athlete of the Year Michael Scarlett, secured the program's fifth SCIAC Tournament crown with a 77-71 victory over Cal Lutheran in the tournament championship. CMS edged Whitworth, 78-73 in the first round of the 2017 NCAA Division III Championship before falling to Whitman, 79-73 in the NCAA Second Round. Scarlett, who averaged 19.3 points and 5.1 rebounds per game in conference play a year ago, will look to pace the Stags again in 2017-18.
Pomona-Pitzer will look to get back to the SCIAC Tournament again in 2017-18 and will be paced by junior Corbin Koch who notched 17.1 points and 3.6 rebounds a year ago to lead the Sagehens. Chapman also eyes a trip to the SCIAC postseason led by senior Rob Nelson who totaled 9.6 points and 4.1 rebounds per SCIAC contest a year ago. Cal Lutheran will look to junior Austin Cole who averaged 13.5 points per game against league foes in 2016-17, and 2017 SCIAC Newcomer of the Year, Caleb Richey who dished out 8.1 assists per game as the Kingsmen aim at a return trip to the SCIAC Tournament final.
The 2017-18 SCIAC men's basketball season begins Wednesday, November 15 as La Verne, Cal Lutheran, Caltech and Occidental are all in action.
2017-18 SCIAC Men's Basketball Preseason Poll
# Denotes First Place Votes
1. CMS (8) - 73 points
2. Pomona-Pitzer (1) - 68 points
3. Chapman - 54 points
4. Cal Lutheran - 51 points
5. Whittier - 45 points
6. Redlands - 43 points
7. La Verne - 34 points
8. Occidental - 22 points
9. Caltech – 15 points