Mike Collins started coaching at Lewis-Clark State he thought it
would be a short-term engagement. Little did he know that he would
fall in love with coaching and the athletes. Now entering his 13th
season with the Warriors he has taken this short-term project and
helped to turn it into one of the premier running programs in the
In the past 10 years the teams have produced 58
All-Americans, four conference Runner-of-the-Year winners, one
Region I Runner-of-the-Year and champion, and numerous
all-conference and all-region selections. Additionally, the Education
Divisionís Student of the Year has been a cross country runner three
times (2001, 2003, and 2008) and in 2009 the Presidentís award that
goes to the outstanding graduate was awarded to a cross country
runner (Rosa Bautista). Additionally, his teams are always amongst
the best in team GPA and academic accomplishments. Coach Collins
was also honored again this past season as the Frontier Conference
Menís and Womenís Coach of the Year after both teams won their
second consecutive Frontier Conference titles.
For the past eight years the womenís cross country
team has placed in the top 25 at nationals each year finishing 15th,
9th, 19th, 17th, 19th,
21st, 19th and 14th. Additionally,
2003 was the first year that a full menís team qualified for
nationals and it finished 23rd; in 2006 they finished 21st,
18th in 2007 and 22nd in 2008.
Coach Collins works hard to stay on top of the
current research, science and methods in regards to coaching his
runners. He has a Masterís degree in Exercise Physiology from the
University of Utah and a Ph.D. in Sport Science from the University
of Idaho. All of his research at both schools dealt with improving
the performances of endurance athletes. He is also a USATF Certified
Level II coach with a specialization in endurance and is working
towards his Level III. Although Collins works hard to stay on top of
the latest in the sport, he is a big believer in the heart and work
ethic of his athletes. No matter what they may or may not have been
"gifted" with, if they are willing to work hard, they will get
He is also a part of the leadership within the sport
of running, serving as First Vice President for the NAIA Cross
Country Coaches Association and has been a national rater for the
past eight years as well as a member of many coaching committees.
This leadership also extends into his other campus work where he is
a member of the Lewis-Clark State College Faculty Senate, a
committee member on the athletic advisory board and other campus
In his spare time Coach Collins enjoys fly fishing,
running, doing triathlons and spending time with his family. His
wife Tracy is the head athletic trainer at Lewis-Clark State and
assists with the team. His two daughters (Kassie Ė 8 and Emily Ė 5)
provide a great deal of fun and have already indicated that they
want to run for daddy some day and be a "country kid."
From an athletic standpoint, Coach Collins has
qualified for the USA Triathlon National Championships five times
and completed his first Ironman Triathlon (2.4m swim, 112m bike,
26.2m run) in 2005 finishing in 11:06.24 after cramping up 13 miles
into the run. He raced his second Ironman in 2009 with results not
as good, but still finishing and with a renewed mindset to do
another and qualify for the world championships in Hawaii.
Collins also believes that he should be willing to
walk the walk and not just talk the talk. In addition to the
triathlons, he runs on a daily basis and pushes himself to stay fit.
Although he doesnít run at the same level of his athletes, he works
to be a good example of what it means to be committed to your sport,
to work and train hard to be better.
Coach Collins is proud of all the accomplishments of
his teams and student-athletes, but is most proud of their
commitment to the team and the family environment that is associated
with the program. His personal belief that the team can achieve
more if committed to each other is shown through the evidence of
their accomplishments on a yearly basis. The commonality and
commitment to each other and the respect and self-sacrifice for both
personal and group goals are ideals that they will carry with them
to success for the rest of their lives.
served as an assistant coach since the beginning of the program and
was instrumental in convincing her husband to come in and coach the
team. As the athletic department's head athletic trainer, she
evaluates and treats the injuries of all athletes at the college,
including those of the Warrior runners. She plays a major role in
the development of the cross country scholarship program, where
individuals and businesses contribute money to the team to be used
by the student-athletes to help offset the costs of going to school.
She also does many of the other administrative duties that help to
keep the program moving in the right direction.
Tracy is a
certified athletic trainer and has served as the ATC at Lewis-Clark
State College for more than a decade. She also is a member of the
NATA and the Idaho Athletic Trainers Association. She is also a
board member of the Idaho State Board of Medicine for Athletic
Trainers and is currently serving as its chair.
Tracy is a
native of Lewiston and attended Lewiston High School, where she
established several school records as a sprinter. Throughout her
high school track career she finished first in several relays and in
the 100 and 200 her junior year at the Idaho State Meet. When she
graduated in 1988, Tracy held six individual and relay records in
track and several of those still stand today, including an 11.93
time in the 100 meters and a 24.97 clocking in the 200.
track at Boise State University, competing in the 100, 200 and 400
meters as well as on relay teams. She graduated from BSU in 1993
with a Bachelorís degree in Athletic Training. She is currently
working on her Masterís degree.
Now Tracy spends
a lot of her time running after her daughters Kassie and Emily, and
loves being a mom. When she has time, she enjoys reading,
photography, scrapbooking, and staying at the familyís cabin on the