Rob Collins remembers his time at SLVHS and the supportive community

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Photo: Billy Lovejoy

After coaching for 18 years, Rob Collins is making his way to the end of his coaching career at SLVHS and moving to Colorado.

Collins started his coaching career at SLVHS in 1998, gaining 11 SCCAL Championships, 14 CCS Team Championships, 5 State XC Team Championships, 24 Individual CCS Champions, 6 Individual State Champions, 2 Individual National Champions, High National Record and National Champions Girls Distance Medley Relay, 5 Girls XC Teams ranked from 2, 4, 7, 11, and 14 In the Country and 3 USA Representatives.

Rob reflects on his past and present years with the teams: “Over the years I have been very fortunate to have been able to have some great athletes/kids who just want to put in the work and strive for success and in return, it has helped SLV get onto the map. We at SLV have accomplished so much.”

Collins speaks highly of his team this year, he’s proud of their accomplishments and knows they’ll make it far. Rob says, “What makes me proud of this group this year? That is easy, they don’t give up and they always strive to do their best. The other is just watching the unbelievable talent that has come and seeing the success they are having.”

Collins started running in 6th grade, but he didn’t take it very seriously. His love was basketball and he explained that he loved playing pickup basketball on the streets in Portland. “But one day I got into trouble,” Collins starts, “My PE Teacher/Track coach got mad at me so he threw me in the longest event he could which was the 1200m [3 Laps], I didn’t know what to do so I just ran and in the first race I broke the School and County record, so after that I became a runner and ended up running 4:50 in the mile as a 6th grader.”

As a runner, Rob was lucky and very fortunate to be at the Elite level. He qualified all years for State in Oregon as a Individual and along with his team. “We won several championships when I was there,” Rob says. His senior year, he finished ranked fourth in the Country and did a lot of traveling.

One of the most important things to Rob was getting to know the kids and remembering that they are kids. He says, “At times I have to admit, I push because I don’t believe in giving up, some people give up too early and everybody has a gift and it can be more than one gift. You just have to find out what it is and go for it.” Rob says, “I believe in striving. Sometimes people need to remember to every wall in front of them there is a door and all you have to do is open it.”

“What I will miss most is friends. I have always believed what makes SLV great is that we have always been supportive athletically, academically and socially.” Rob says.

Rob talks about his funniest moments through the years: “The funniest moments were haircut bets, and my place getting TP’d by another cross country team. They didn’t see me and I joined in on them with a covered hood and at the end of my road we all got together and then I took off my hood and they just all started laughing.”

Rob concludes by saying, “I would like to say Thank you to SLV staff, kids, district, SLV people and really the kids I have been able to work with over the years. Thank you for all the support you have given me and my family. You will be all truly missed. ” Rob will be missed by the SLV community and he will be supported by his runners, friends, and many others.

By Courtney Carter

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