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Jimmy Collins (basketball) facts for kids

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Jimmy Collins
Personal information
Born (1946-11-24)November 24, 1946
Syracuse, New York
Died December 13, 2020(2020-12-13) (aged 74)
Chicago, Illinois
High school Corcoran (Syracuse, New York)
Listed height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Listed weight 210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
College New Mexico State (1967–1970)
NBA Draft 1970 / Round: 1 / Pick: 11th overall
Pro career 1970–1972
Coaching career 1973–2010
Career history
As player:
1970–1972 Chicago Bulls
As coach:
1973–1974 New Mexico State (GA)
1980–1983 St. Thomas Elementary
1983–1996 Illinois (assistant)
1996–2010 UIC
Career highlights and awards
As player:
  • Consensus second-team All-American (1970)

As head coach:

  • 2× Horizon League tournament (2002, 2004)
  • Horizon League regular season (1998)

James Earl Collins (November 24, 1946 – December 13, 2020) was an American basketball player and coach. He was born and raised in Syracuse, New York, where he attended Corcoran High School. Collins was the head coach of the men's basketball team at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 1996 to 2010, becoming the program's all-time winningest coach and leading UIC to its first-ever postseason appearances - NCAA tournament appearances in 1998, 2002 and 2004, and an NIT showing in 2003.

Early life and playing career

Born and raised in Syracuse, New York, Collins graduated from Corcoran High School and played college basketball at New Mexico State University under head coach Lou Henson. As a senior, Collins was the captain of an Aggie squad that reached the 1970 Final Four.

Collins was then drafted in the first round of the 1970 NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls.

Coaching career

Collins began his coaching career with one and a half years as a graduate assistant at New Mexico State after retiring from professional basketball. In 1976, Collins returned to Chicago to start a trucking business. From 1977 to 1983, Collins was a probation officer for Cook County, Illinois. Collins also returned to coaching in 1980 as volunteer head coach at St. Thomas Elementary School in Chicago.

From 1983 to 1996, Collins was an assistant at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (Illinois) under Lou Henson. There he had made a name for himself as one of the nation's best recruiters, helping lure Chicago area players such as Kendall Gill, Nick Anderson, Deon Thomas and the bulk of the Fighting Illini's 1989 Final Four team.

In 1996, Collins became head coach at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). In 14 seasons, Collins had a 218–208 record, including three NCAA Tournament appearances in 1998, 2002, and 2004. On July 20, 2010, Collins announced his retirement from coaching.

Collins died on December 13, 2020 at age 74.

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
UIC Flames (Horizon League) (1996–2010)
1996–97 UIC 15–14 11–5 T–6th
1997–98 UIC 22–6 12–2 T–1st NCAA Division I first round
1998–99 UIC 7–21 2–12 8th
1999–00 UIC 11–20 5–9 7th
2000–01 UIC 11–17 5–9 6th
2001–02 UIC 20–14 8–8 6th NCAA Division I first round
2002–03 UIC 21–9 12–4 3rd NIT first round
2003–04 UIC 24–8 12–4 2nd NCAA Division I first round
2004–05 UIC 15–14 8–8 T–4th
2005–06 UIC 16–15 8–8 T–3rd
2006–07 UIC 14–18 7–9 T–4th
2007–08 UIC 18–15 9–9 T–4th
2008–09 UIC 16–15 7–11 T–6th
2009–10 UIC 8–22 3–15 9th
UIC: 218–208 (.512) 109–113 (.491)
Total: 218–208 (.512)

      National champion         Conference regular season champion         Conference tournament champion
      Conference regular season and conference tournament champion       Conference division champion

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