Episode Debuts on Opening Day of the 2021-2022 NBA Season
A conversation with Lincoln Laureate, 1972 Olympian, NBA All Star player and coach, broadcast analyst, basketball executive, and Benton, Illinois native Doug Collins is set to debut as the latest episode of The Lincoln Laureates podcast series on opening day of the very sport that made him a household name.
Collins, who became a Lincoln Laureate upon receiving the Order of Lincoln earlier this year, credits his hometown’s legendary high school basketball Coach Rich Herrin for giving him the “bug” to play basketball.
“I started falling in love with basketball in aJunior High and a lot of it was because of the passion and love that my high school coach had,” Collins tells retired ABC News award winning broadcast journalist Ron Claiborne, guest host of the Collins episode. “He was the spark that got it (passion for basketball) ignited.”
When asked what he learned from the Legendary Coach Herrin, Collins replied without hesitation, “Integrity.” “He was a man of the highest integrity, Collins explains. “I modeled myself after him. When I went to school at Illinois State, I wanted to come back and be a Coach Herrin.”
Collins’ exceptional college play at Illinois State and recruitment from the legendary Will Robinson, the sport’s first Division I African American coach, would detour those graduation plans and set him on a path to NBA fame.
“I learned life from Coach Robinson,” says Collins. “He was an amazing man.”
Collins, who earned four NBA All Star Selections when playing for the Philadelphia 76ers, would eventually coach the team during a coaching career that included stints with the Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, and the Washington Wizards.
A production of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois, The Lincoln Laureates captures conversations between award-winning broadcast journalists and select Lincoln Laureates and is available through Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher, with streaming available through the TuneIn App and found here: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-lincoln-laureates/id1553528425