Jim Collins will begin his first season as an assistant baseball coach at Heartland Community College.
Most recently, Collins served as the head baseball coach at University High School in Normal, Illinois, starting in 2011. During his 4 year tenure as Head Coach, U-High compiled a 93-48 record and the 2012 squad won the IHSA Class 2A State championship, the school’s first since 1998. Coach Collins was honored as the Illinois High School Baseball Coaches Association (IHSBCA) Class 2A Coach of the Year 2012, and was a finalist for the National High School Athletic Coaches Association (NHSACA) National Baseball Coach of the Year.
During Collins’ first year as the Head Coach at U-High, the Pioneers went 20-13 and won both the Corn Belt Conference regular season and tournament championships. During his second season, Collins led his team to a 29-10 mark, El Paso Regional and Clinton Section championships, and then two wins over Trenton-Wesclin and Rock Island to claim the State Championship. In 2013, U-High finished 19-12. Last season the Pioneers finished 23-13, capturing the Bloomington Regional Championship and reaching the Sweet 16 before falling in the Sectional Championship game to eventual State Runner-Up Springfield Sacred Heart Griffin.
Before becoming the Head Coach at U-High, Collins spent time as an assistant baseball coach at Normal West High School (2007-2010) and U-High (2004-2006). From 2000-2006, Collins served as the head coach for the Bloomington-Normal Baseball Association (BNBA) Renegades. He also served as the Head Coach for the Intercity team in the Pantagraph All-Star game in both 2011 and 2014.
In the summer of 2010 and 2011, Coach Collins managed the BNBA 18 Gold team. In 2010 he led the BNBA 18 Gold to the Diamond Sports World Series championship.
As a prep standout, Collins was named the team captain at Normal Community High School in 1978, was selected to play for the Intercity team in Pantagraph All-Star game, and was a member of the Louis E. Davis Post 56 Varsity team.
Collins won numerous awards and played in several Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA) National and International Softball Congress (ISC) World Series tournaments as a member of the nationally-recognized Bloomington Hearts fast pitch softball team (1980-1990). In 1983, Collins was a silver medalist as a member of the West team at the Olympic Sports Festival.
Coach Collins is the father of former Heartland baseball player Michael Collins. He is married to Kelly Collins. Their other son, Jimmy Collins, played baseball at U-High and resides in Bloomington. Collins is employed as a manager with State Farm Bank.
Collins’ favorite baseball team is the Chicago Cubs, and his favorite player is Ryne Sandberg. His must read book is “Dare to be Uncommon” by Tony Dungy, and his favorite baseball memories are watching his two sons play baseball and winning a state championship.
Phone: (309) 530-2880