FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2013 file photo, Philadelphia 76ers head coach Doug Collins directs his team during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers, in Philadelphia. NCAA tournament games at Philadelphia's Wells Fargo means the Philadelphia 76ers have to hit the road. Doug Collins, in his third year coaching the Sixers, wished he could stick around to watch Duke. Chris Collins, his son, is Duke's associate head coach. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)
Wednesday, March 20, 2013 3:21 pm
76ers coach Doug Collins rooting for son, Duke
By DAN GELSTONAP Basketball Writer
NCAA tournament games at Philadelphia's Wells Fargo means the Philadelphia 76ers have to hit the road. Doug Collins, in his third year coaching the Sixers, wished he could stick around to watch Duke. Chris Collins, his son, is Duke's associate head coach. The second-seeded Blue Devils are in Philly to play No. 15 Albany in a second-round tournament game. Chris Collins played for Duke and then briefly overseas before he joined Mike Krzyzewski's coaching staff in 2000. He was promoted to associate coach in 2008. He also worked under Krzyzewski with USA Basketball at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2012 London Olympics.
Father and son are tight and basketball is a shared bond. Doug Collins' postgame press conferences are usually packed with his family members and he brought his small grandchildren to the podium last year after playoff wins.
Collins coached the Chicago Bulls and Chris was raised in Illinois.
"One of my biggest adjustments, when he went away to college, was missing my buddy laying on the couch next to me watching all of those NBA games and talking about the games with me," Doug Collins said.
Krzyzewski could soon experience the same empty nest feeling. Chris Collins has been a hot candidate for coaching vacancies the last two seasons and he's rumored to be in the mix to take over at Northwestern.
"It would have to be the right spot to give him a chance to go in and do it well," Doug Collins said. "I'm hoping he gets an opportunity one of these days.
Up first, helping the Blue Devils win their third national championship since he joined the coaching staff.
Once the March Madness run ends, Chris Collins could be moving on. His father says Chris is ready to stand on his own.
"Chris is going to be a great head coach. I'm not saying that because I'm his daddy," Doug Collins said. "He has all the attributes, he's smart, he's got good people skills, he relates to people, he knows the game inside and out, he's had a terrific teacher in Coach K, he knows the business, he's coached pros, he's coached at a lot of different levels, he's been around the game since he was real little."