Jake Zehnder enters his sixth year as the assistant coach of the College of Central Florida men’s basketball program.
During his tenure, Zehnder has helped lead the Patriots to a 138-52 overall record. He also helped lead the Patriots to a state-best, 13th consecutive FCSAA State Tournament appearance and NJCAA Top 25 ranking, 4 of his 6 years.
In 2020, the Patriots finished with a 25-7 overall record and 9-3 in Conference play. The Patriots were Mid-Florida Conference Champions. Waylan Napper was named FCSAA Player of the Year for the State of Florida and the Mid-Florida Conference. Waylan Napper and Edoardo Del Cadia made the All-State team. Five players were named on Mid-Florida Conference teams with Waylan Napper, Edoardo Del Cadia, Lattrell Jones and Angelo Johnson being named first team. Waylan Napper and Angelo Johnson were named to the FCSAA All-Tournament team.
Zehnder has been instrumental in the pursuance of individual and team development, helping the Patriots to multiple team and individual Top 10 rankings.
As a team, Zehnder helped CF finish Top 5 in the state in 3-point percentage (36.5) and field goal percentage (47.6). The Patriots also finished Top 10 in the FCSAA in: total points per game (86.2), blocks (4.1), assists (15.8), and rebounds (42.8). Six players were named to Mid-Florida All-Conference teams, while two received all-state honors.
Individually, Arkansas State signee Canberk 'JB' Kus finished No. 2 in the state in total blocks (70) and Top 5 in blocks per game (2.2), while Western Carolina signee Carlos Dotosn finished Top 5 in total rebounds (248) and Van Turner Jr. finished third in 3-point percentage (45.1).
In his first season as an assistant coach, Zehnder helped guide the Patriots to a Mid-Florida Conference Championship and helped the Patriots make their thirteenth-straight state tournament appearance.
Before arriving at CF, Zehnder served as the head coach of the freshman and assistant coach of the varsity team at The Rock School in Gainesville, Fla. from 2012-2014. His coaching career also includes a stint as an assistant on Jeff Myers’ coaching staff at P.K. Yonge during the 2011-12 season.
While at The Rock School, Zehnder’s duties included planning and executing practices and games for the freshman team. His role on the varsity staff included helping plan practices, develop the team’s guards during practices, as well as to conduct individual workouts for players. Zehnder was also responsible for tracking statistics for in-game play. Zehnder coached a number of accomplished players while at The Rock, including Joel Embiid, former No. 4 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft and 3x NBA All-Star, and Mitchell Wilbekin, a 26-game starter as a freshman at Wake Forest University.
During the spring and summer months, Zehnder coached youth basketball for the Gainesville Kings organization from 2011-14. His focus was not only on skill development but centered around fostering a competitive spirit while promoting positive sportsmanship. Proudly, his U4-U6 teams won a number of tournaments including the well-known Disney’s Easter Classic.
Most recently, Zehnder has seen 29 players sign to 4-year institutions. Including but not limited to, Diamante Lewis (Bethune-Cookman University), Kevin ‘K.J.’ Maura (University of Maryland-Baltimore County), Eddy Polanco (Southeastern Louisiana University), Malik Dunbar (Auburn University), Ivan Gandia-Rosa (University of North Florida), Francois Lewis (Presbyterian College), DeVonte Foster (Troy University), Canberk Kus (Arkansas State University), Carlos Dotson (Western Carolina University), Antwan Maxwell, Jr. (Youngstown State University), Kevin Hunt, Jr. (Morehead State University), Quenton Jackson (Texas A&M University), Jeremy Sheppard (University of Rhode Island), Jaron Williams (University of Tennessee at Martin) and Edoardo Del Cadia (The University of Nevada, Las Vegas).
In 2018, Zehnder was recognized as the top junior college assistant coach under 30-years-old by Coachstat.net.
A native of St. Cloud, Fla., Zehnder played high school basketball at both Harmony High School and Florida Air Academy.