With the FIU women’s basketball team gearing up to begin its season in the fall, the Panthers and head coach Tiara Malcom have announced the hiring of Michael Panaggio as an assistant coach on Tuesday.
“I am extremely thankful and excited about the opportunity to be on Coach Malcom’s staff and to be a part of the FIU family,” Panaggio said. “I believe there is a lot of potential here at FIU and I trust Coach Malcom’s vision and I truly believe that the program is heading in that direction.”
Panaggio joins FIU after spending the past four seasons as the Director of Player Development and Head Girls Basketball Coach at DME Sports Academy in Daytona Beach.
“I am excited to add Michael to my staff as an assistant coach,” said head coach Tiara Malcom. “He brings knowledge from his experience as both a player and high school coach. He was able to do some special things at the prep and high school level with starting and growing the program there. I look forward to working with Michael to push this program in the winning direction.”
Panaggio, a native of Daytona Beach, Florida, will be responsible for handling the male practice players, point guard skill development and opponent scouting.
Panaggio began the girls’ high school basketball program at DME Sports Academy during the 2017-18 school year. The following school year, the girls’ basketball team won the 2018-19 SIAA Championship. He was also named SIAA Coach of the Year in back-to-back years.
Along with his head coaching duties at DME Sports Academy, Panaggio was the Director of Player Development from May of 2015 to August of 2019. Additionally, he assisted in Georgios Papagiannis’ career advancement from a second-round pick to a lottery pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. Panaggio also trained NBA Pre-Draft players such as former Philadelphia 76er Shawn Long and Corey Walden who currently plays in Israel.
Prior to his time at DME Sports Academy, Panaggio spent time overseas as a professional basketball player. He spent two seasons in Italy playing for Olimpica Cerignola and later for Basket Follo before continuing his career in Latvia with Gulbenes Buki in 2017. While playing with Basket Follo in 2016, Panaggio was named MVP and 3-point champion in the Liguria Tournament.
He began his collegiate career at Northwest Florida State College (2009-2011) where he earned a NJCAA Region 8 title during the 2009-10 season before spending a season at Valdosta State. Panaggio went on to finish his career at Lander University (2012-2014) where he was named to the All-Conference Peach Belt Team for the 2013-14 season. Panaggio was also in the Top 10 for scoring, assists, minutes played, assists-turnover ratio, free throw percentage and 3-point percentage in the Peach Belt Conference.