Wittenberg University is pleased to announce the hiring of veteran coach, 1988 alumnus, and former Tiger football wide receiver Jim Collins as the new head coach of Wittenberg football. Collins, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at the University of Dayton (UD), is expected to take the helm on Dec. 1, 2021.
“We are extremely excited to welcome back former Wittenberg Tiger Jim Collins as our head football coach,” said Brian Agler, vice president and director of athletics and recreation. “Jim is a proven winner who has coached championship teams. He has ‘lived’ the Wittenberg University football tradition. Being elite in all facets is the standard in our football program, and we are confident that Coach Collins will embrace this standard daily.”
Collins comes to Wittenberg with an impressive resume spanning 30 years of coaching success. Prior to his current post at UD, he served as the director of player personnel at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point (2019), which followed 11 years at Saginaw Valley State (2008-2019) where he served as the head coach. In that time, Collins led his team to three straight Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference North Division Championships from 2011-2013, as well as three NCAA Division II playoff appearances (2009, 2011, 2013). Collins’ teams also ranked in the final National Poll twice (2009, 2013) and final Regional Poll six times (2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2018).
Additionally, from 1997-2007, Collins served as the head coach at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, where he was named Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Coach of the Year on three separate occasions (2001, 2003, 2006). While there, Collins led his team to three NCAA Division III Playoff Appearances (2005, 2006, 2007), and his team was ranked in the final National Poll three times (#3 in 2006, #5 in 2005, #13 in 2007). During Collins’ tenure at Capital, his teams had a perfect 5-0 record against Wittenberg, including a 54-0 win in Springfield. In 2006, Collins led Capital to two wins over Wittenberg, including a victory in the first round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Early in his career, Collins was the head coach, offensive coordinator, and quarterbacks coach for the University of Dubuque (1994-1996). Prior to that, he served as offensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach, and wide receivers coach at Illinois Wesleyan (1991-1993), where he helped lead the Titans to the 1992 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin title and an NCAA Division III Playoff berth.
Described as “a high energy leader with a proven track record of building and directing successful football programs, developing a winning culture, setting a standard of excellence, emphasizing high academic achievement, developing talent, and aggressively recruiting outstanding student athletes,” Collins called the opportunity to head the football program at Wittenberg “a dream.”