Ken Scalmanini enters his 25th season as Head Coach of the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Men's Basketball Program in 2023-24. During his tenure, Scalmanini's contagious enthusiasm and vast knowledge of the game has led the Stags to unprecedented success.
Scalmanini currently sits as the winningest coach in CMS history, surpassing coaching legend David Wells' total career wins (324) during the 2016-17 season and currently standing at 432 wins. The program has finished first or second in the SCIAC league 18 times, highlighted by ten SCIAC Championships in 2002, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018. Scalmanini's winning percentage places him among the top 50 of current DIII coaches.
Scalmanini has built the program on the foundation of intelligent, sound motion offense and relentless, suffocating man-to-man defense. The motion offense emphasizes reactionary cutting and reading, allowing players considerable freedom in the half court. The tenacious Stag defense relies on man-to-man principles with great importance on help defense. Recently, CMS led the nation in scoring defense in 2018-19, allowing just 60.3 points per game.
In recent years, Scalmanini recruited top basketball talent nationwide, from California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Arizona, Nebraska, Illinois, New York, Florida and Texas. He searches for individuals who are both unselfish, passionate players and strong, student leaders. Not surprisingly, his recruits have been successful both on and off the court, as his players have received numerous first-team All-SCIAC awards and landed esteemed internships and careers.
Scalmanini has a rich basketball history. He began coaching in 1993 and served two years as an Assistant Coach at Cal Poly Pomona before joining the CMS staff. After a four-year stint as Assistant Coach at CMS, Coach Scalmanini took control of the reins in 1998. As a player, Scalmanini played two seasons at Cal Poly Pomona, where he averaged nine points, six rebounds, and four assists per game at the off-guard and small forward positions. In high school, he was the 1986 Player of the Year in the Redwood Empire League at St. Vincent's High School.
Scalmanini, or "Coach Scali" as he is known, lives in Claremont with his wife Jeannie, son Kyle, who played collegiate basketball at Westmont and Cal State San Marcos, and daughter Emily. He is actively involved in the community as coach of Little League baseball, AYSO soccer, and All-Net middle school basketball.