The first NJCAA (National Junior College Athletic Association) Division III men’s basketball national ranking poll of the 2017-18 season came out on the 26th of December in the year 2017. Lorain County Community College (17-2) was nowhere to be found until the ninth of January of 2018 as they were ranked 11th in the nation with a perfect 12-0 record. A stalemate would occur on the outside of the top 10 for LCCC in the next 21 days until the most recent Division III ranking poll on January 30, 2018. LCCC just achieved top 10 national status in the NJCAA Division III men’s basketball.
The Commodores started out the season 12-0. Eastfield College, Herkimer County Community College, and Brookdale Community College are the only other teams to start the season 12-0 and they have been in the top 10 rankings since December 5, 2017.
“It’s great for them,” said Marty Eggleston, head coach for the LCCC men’s basketball team. “Because the fruits of their labor are being acknowledged and I’m happy and excited for the team.”
LCCC is top 10 in points per game (8), field goals made per game (9), attempts per game (2) and steals per game (7) out of 107 teams that have played at least nine games. They are also 13th in 3-point shots made per game, 16th 3-point attempts per game, 16.5 offensive rebounds per game, 17th in total rebounds per game, 19th rebounding margin per game and 15th in 3-point percentage per game.
According to Eggleston, teams have to submit their team to be considered for rankings and he didn’t do it.
The Commodores have dominated the OCCAC (Ohio Community College Athletic Conference) that consists of mostly Division II teams, winning 7-of-8 conference games. The undefeated conference foe and No. 1 ranked team in Division II Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) (19-0) is the only team LCCC lost to in their conference.
“I wouldn’t call it dominance, I just call it hard work,” coach Eggleston said. We work these guys hard and they respond to it and it’s a reflection of their effort they put in for the product.”
Six out of eight times, a Commodore was awarded the OCCAC Division III Player of the Week in the 2017-18 season. Commodores’ Mike Rell was given it four times, Jake Schultz and recently Zach Swain once.
LCCC has had 11 leading scorers this season, the most in the NJCAA Division III men’s basketball. Their bench produces 45.5 points per game and have broke 60 bench points six times this season.
Other than their loss to Tri-C, their second loss was to Wayne County Community College (8-5).
The rest of the Commodores’ regular season will consists of six teams with a winning record. One of them, on the seventh of February will be against the Tri-C. Another game the Commodores played and won was at Edison Community College (97-94), who was 7-1 before they faced LCCC. Edison was once ranked in Division II. Philadelphia Community College was ranked 14th in Division III and lost to LCCC. The poll made on January 17, 2018 ranked Philadelphia three spots ahead of the Commodores.