Collins takes over at SEB
January 17, 2010Southeast Bulloch High School
BROOKLET - Pat Collins was introduced as the new head coach for Southeast Bulloch High School Monday afternoon in Brooklet.
"This is a great opportunity for me," said Collins. "I believe that this is a great opportunity, both for myself and for this school, to keep improving this program. I'm glad to be a part of this community and want to help produce a quality team."
Collins is returning to SEB after a previous stint in from 1994 to 1995. Collins did not stray far after leaving, holding the head coaching position at Portal and Screven County before returning to lead the Yellow Jackets in 2010.
"We thought it was important to find someone who was familiar with the community," said SEB principal Dr. Trey Robertson. "Coach Collins knows a lot of people in the area and he is familiar with the situation that he is coming into. He realizes what the success of this team can mean to the community."
The first order of business was to meet with members of the team. Collins discussed his plans with players who will be returning to the team Monday morning, followed by a second meeting with this season's eighth-grade team, who will be entering the high school next season.
"I told them that this has a lot to do with their attitude," said Collins. "I realize that there will be some change, but I told the kids that when you're faced with change and new challenges, ninety percent of the result is attitude and how you react to it. I think that the message got through and they're excited to get started."
Also a priority for Collins will be assembling a staff of assistants. Each of this season's coaches that also serve SEB as full-time teachers have been interviewed and Collins also plans to meet with the local volunteers. Several new assistants are also expected to be named in the coming weeks.
"I've looked at quite a few possibilities for assistant coaches already," said Collins. "There are some very qualified and experienced applicants out there, and I feel that we will be able to build a very capable staff."
While returning the Jackets to success on the field will be a main focus, other important aspects of a head coach were considered before choosing Collins as the man for the job.
"It won't take long for the kids to figure out what kind of person coach Collins is," said Robertson. "He has great character and is a solid role model. I'm confident that he will be able to produce great teams and great kids."
With spring practice still a few months away, there is still some speculation as to what kind of changes will be instituted as far as strategy on the field. SEB lost only five seniors last season and should return a wealth of experience, including the versatile Dee Odum, who has starred at quarterback and running back the past two seasons.
"One of the first things that we want to do is evaluate what we've got," said Collins. "Not only the talent on the field, but the resources we have and how we want to utilize them. I'm sure that the last coaching staff did a good job, but I'm not familiar with that routine and things are bound to be different. I'm sure that this new staff will do a good job too and I think that the kids have bought into that."
Collins will certainly have a lot on his plate when the 2010 season arrives. SEB was winless in 2009 - losing all but one game by double digits. The Yellow Jackets have managed just five victories in the past four seasons and haven't qualified for the GHSA state playoffs since a first-round exit in 2005 - the last season in which SEB had a winning record.