The Education of Yanni Hufnagel
Today on Tablet, a look at Harvard’s assistant hoops coach
Yanni Hufnagel is quietly making himself a force as an assistant coach on the sidelines of the Harvard basketball team. Today on Tablet, Ben Z. Cohen looks at how he got there and where he is going.
In his first year at Cornell, Hufnagel spent one season as a basketball manager, and he scored a summer and fall internship with the New Jersey Nets, where his duties included laundry pickup. But his big break came right after graduation when his Nets colleague Ryan Krueger, now an assistant coach at Lehigh, connected him with his old boss, Oklahoma basketball Coach Jeff Capel, who was looking for a graduate assistant. Capel flew Hufnagel out for an interview and offered him the position while driving him back to the airport. “He was just a ball of energy,” Capel said. Hufnagel’s time in Norman, Okla., overlapped with the two years of Oklahoma star Blake Griffin, the future No. 1 NBA draft pick, and the aspiring coach made himself invaluable to Griffin by opening the gym in the morning and rebounding late at night. “He’s probably the most genuine, hardworking guy I’ve ever been around in basketball,” said Taylor Griffin, Blake’s brother and Oklahoma teammate. “Anything we needed, he was there to provide that.”
Suit up for the rest here.
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180
WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.
I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at email@example.com. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.
We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.