Yanni Hufnagel has always loved basketball. As a child, he developed basketball strategies and practiced Red Auerbach’s famous plays using basketball figurines. He continued to play basketball for as long as he could before being cut from his high school varsity basketball team. That did not stop him. He became the team’s announcer where he got to show off his basketball strategy chops.
Yanni Hufnagel was quite an athlete. He was able to play lacrosse at college before he quit to pursue basketball. He took an unpaid internship with the New Jersey Nets that put him in strategy sessions for the team’s upcoming draft.
He continued his basketball legacy by taking an unpaid graduate assistant position at Oklahoma. This allowed him to assist in designing practices. He was also part of the schools recruiting strategy sessions and he was put in charge for all on-campus recruiting visits. His never ending energy and likability made him a desirable assistant coach after graduating from Oklahoma.
Harvard scooped him up in 2009. He became the assistant coach for the Crimson Tide and was responsible for recruiting. His recruiting during his four-year tenure in Cambridge was stellar. The Ivy League school won its first league championship, the team went 79-24, the Crimson Tide won a school record 26 games in 2011, and Harvard became nationally ranked for the very first time. This won Yanni Hufnagel national accolades. A CBS Sports poll of college coaches named him the assistant coach most likely to rise to fame.
Since his dominating days at Harvard, he has recruited for Villanova where he signed to future NBA draft picks. He put together one of the country’s best back courts with the top five recruiting class for the University of California, Berkeley. And now he serves as the assistant coach and recruiter for the University of Nevada, Reno.
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