Yanni Hufnagel spent the last decade working as an assistant basketball coach for five different college basketball programs. He is known as a great recruiter and was expected to make it as a coach in his own right before his career came to a premature end following a sexual harassment suit.
Having been cut from his high school team, Hufnagel started commentating, which perhaps gave him an early taste of game analysis and strategy. Maintaining a passion for basketball through college, Hufnagel interned with the New Jersey Nets the summer before he began his first career position as a graduate assistant coach with the University of Oklahoma.
While at Oklahoma, Hufnagel earned his master’s degree in Adult and Higher Education with an Emphasis in Intercollegiate Athletics Administration. Before completing his degree he was hired as the assistant coach and recruiter for the Harvard Crimson. In 2010, while still with the Crimson, he was able to simultaneously finish his degree, and get noticed as an assistant coach with an eye for recruitment.
Hufnagel stayed with Harvard for the first five years of his career before a brief stint at Vanderbilt where he helped recruit a stellar 2014 class for the program. He then moved on to the University of California Berkeley where, again as an assistant coach, he helped to recruit two all-star players (who are now in the NBA) which helped rank the Golden Bears as the 23rd overall team that year.
It was at UC Berkeley that Hufnagel was accused of sexual assault by a reporter, who claimed that since she was not interested in Hufnagel, he refused to provide her information related to his position which thus got her fired from her reporting job. While Hufnagel’s attorney proved that no sexual misconduct occurred on Hufnagel’s part, the damage was done and he resigns.
After this controversy, Hufnagel took on another assistant coaching job, this time with the University of Nevada, Reno. Although making it to the tournament in 2017, Hufnagel decided to not return for another year and it is unknown what his plans for the future hold.