WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Bobby Collins, Winston-Salem State men’s basketball coach, has stepped down to take the head coaching position at the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore, a member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC).
Collins spent eight seasons at the helm of the Rams’ men’s basketball program. During his tenure, he helped guide the Rams through tough times that led to the program once again becoming one of the top teams in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA,) as well as one of the top teams in NCAA Division II men’s basketball.
“It’s going to be a challenge, but one I’m ready for,” said Collins about his departure for the Division I school. “One of the things I am really about is not only winning games, but making sure these guys win in life. I want to be a positive influence to them on how to do things the right way.”
Two seasons ago, Collins guided WSSU basketball to conference prominence as he led the team to its 11th CIAA championship and returned to the NCAA Division II Men’s Basketball National Championship Tournament for the second straight season. His team advanced to this year’s CIAA tournament finals, where they were defeated by Livingstone College.
Since returning to NCAA Division II and the CIAA in the fall of 2010, Collins led WSSU basketball to a 79-34 overall record that includes winning a CIAA Southern Division Championship and three appearances in the NCAA Division II Atlantic Regional Tournament. During his entire tenure at WSSU, he compiled an overall record of 116-114.
Collins, who was named Winston-Salem State University’s sixth head men’s basketball coach on Sept. 5, 2006, helped the Rams make history in his first season on the bench as WSSU participated in their first year of Division I play.
The son of two non-denominational ministers, Collins is the youngest of 10 siblings. He is a native of Southern Pines, N.C., where he graduated from Pinecrest High School and helped his squad to an 18-5 and 20-4 overall record during his junior and senior seasons. In 1984, he earned All-State honors and was conference Player of the Year. He is also the proud father of a son, Bobby, Jr.
“We sincerely appreciate the contributions Coach Collins has made to Winston-Salem State University, both on and off the court. During his eight years, he helped transition our program from Division I back into the CIAA, and by doing so also helped elevate the program back to one of the most successful not only in the CIAA, but in the Atlantic Region. We wish him nothing but the best in the future,” said Interim Director of Athletics Tonia Walker.