Coach Coccimiglio reaches the 500 mark


Steve Coccimiglio (Alec Graham / The Inquirer)

But that was not the team’s focus on Jan. 29. The focus was on winning. The focus was on making the playoffs.

“The day before at practice one guy brought it up; all I said to him was that the game was important because we need to win to make the playoffs,” Coccimiglio said.

Coccimiglio doesn’t want the spotlight on him despite reaching a milestone that only 12 other junior college coaches in California have reached.

When asked if he plans to continue coaching, Coccimiglio, 53, said that basketball is his love, and coaching is the only thing he could see himself doing.

“A lot of it is going in to depend on my health. I still have a lot of tread on the tires, and I’d still like to coach for another eight to 10 years, but I need to take care of myself better,” Coccimiglio said.

Coccimiglio works with the basketball team, but he insists that the most important part of his job isn’t basketball but life related.  He says he is training these young men not only to have great work ethic on the court, but at their jobs as well. Coccimiglio said that this is probably the most important part of his job, and the part he tries to communicate to his player. 

“We have a common denominator of basketball, and it helps us communicate.” Coccimiglio said. 

Coccimiglio is 285 wins behind Percy Carr, head coach at San Jose City College, and the active wins leader.

The Vikings are currently 19-4, 8-1 in conference play, with five games remaining and a possible playoff berth in the making in the coming weeks.