The University of Nevada’s assistant men’s basketball coach since April 2016, Yanni Hufnagel, has an impressive background. Before his current position with the renowned Nevada Wolf Pack, he was an assistant coach for the Harvard Crimson, Vanderbilt Commodores, and the California Golden Bears. He was regarded as Harvard basketball’s “Whiz Kid.”
Being an assistant coach in college basketball means also being a recruiter. Hufnagel is acknowledged to be one of the top college basketball recruiters and has long been one of the sport’s most promising ones as well as being one of the country’s hottest young coaches.
As a child, Yanni Hufnagel had read coaching books until the pages were frayed. Although his best sport was lacrosse, and he played that for a season at Pennsylvania State University, his first love was always basketball, but he didn’t play well enough to make the varsity team in a high school in his hometown of Scarsdale, New York. Therefore, he decided to take a position as a commentator for the team’s games on a local TV channel.
During his first year at Cornell University, Hufnagel was a basketball manager for one season and he scored a New Jersey Nets summer and fall internship. His big break came right after graduation when Oklahoma basketball Coach Jeff Capel took him on as a graduate assistant and called him “a ball of energy.”
At Cornell, Hufnagel received a bachelor’s degree in Industrial and Labor Relations, and received his master’s degree in Adult and Higher Education with an Intercollegiate Athletics Administration Emphasis at the University of Oklahoma.
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