SWOSU volleyball coach Josh Collins said he really loves the community aspect of SWOSU and Weatherford.
“I love Weatherford and I love SWOSU,” Collins said. “The people here are just so nice and coaching volleyball has completely changed my life and has given me a new purpose and has really awesome.”
Collins said the No. 1 purpose for the student athletes at SWOSU, besides getting a degree, is for the student athletes to leave SWOSU confident in whom they are.
“We want the student athletes to feel good about the impact they will make on the world,” Collins said. “We want them to be confident and develop a deep sense of pride, not only in SWOSU, but their friends and families.”
Collins said confidence comes from the family aspect at SWOSU, not just in volleyball, but in all of the SWOSU sports.
“There is unconditional love coming not only the coaches and SWOSU, but from Weatherford as well,” Collins said. “Never once have we come home from a road trip where we lost a volleyball game and were greeted by anything but ‘Keep your head up’ or ‘keep working hard’. This instills confidence in players and hopefully, they are instilling that confidence in other aspects of their life.”
Collins said he has learned so much about himself and has broadened his horizon because of coaching volleyball. He also has learned from the student athletes who come to SWOSU.
“I have learned even silly things such as the new lingos, trends and what the newest Tik Tok video is,” Collins said. “There are some deeper aspects and I have learned about different backgrounds from the players who come to SWOSU. We have had a player from Australia at one time and players from all around the country with different beliefs. It is so fun to see these kids come in from big cities and places which are much more bustling than Weatherford is and just see them adapt to what we do and believe here at SWOSU.”
Collins came to SWOSU in 2004 to get his undergraduate degree after playing basketball at Clarendon College and has been at SWOSU since then. Claredon College is a community college in Clarendon, Texas.
Collins is from of Hedley, Texas, and holds two degrees from SWOSU. He got his bachelor’s degree in 2006 before completing his master’s degree in Sports Management in 2008. He is married to his wife, Jamie, in June 2012 and they live in Weatherford with their daughter, Indie Pearl, who was born in December 2017 and Collins said Indie is a blast.
While at SWOSU, he decided to get into coaching. When he arrived in Weatherford, he came here to be the assistant for men’s basketball for two seasons. In spring 2005, SWOSU was looking to hire a new volleyball coach. He was good friends with the coaches at Clarendon College and one of his good friends happened to be coach the head volleyball coach for SWOSU at the time, coach Bo Pagliasotti. Pagliasotti was the head volleyball coach from 2002-05 at Clarendon College and then came to SWOSU, where he was the head coach from 2005-12.
When Paglisotti was hired to coach SWOSU volleyball, Collins asked him if he would need any help calling lines again and Paglisotti asked Collins to be his student assistant.
“At the time, I had no idea what was going on,” Collins said. “I went ahead and decided to help out. I am pretty sure they were helping me out more than I was helping them out, but I was glad to do it. The one season being a student assistant was enough to get me hooked and I knew then I wanted to be a volleyball coach and it has been a fantastic ride ever since.”
Collins not only is the head volleyball coach, but he also is the Director of Gameday Operations and is the announcer at baseball games and sometimes announces the soccer games.
“I absolutely love everything I do for SWOSU,” Collins said. “When I first arrived at SWOSU, there were so many people who motivated, believed in me and really wanted to help me out and wanted to see me succeed. I thought everyone was just so gracious and now I am at the point where I can return the favor and help students out and give them opportunities and guide them in the right direction. This really gives me joy and a purpose and I enjoy doing this every day. It is really cool to be around student athletes and seeing them compete and represent the university I love. It also is really awesome to see the students come out and support the student athletes on game days.”
Collins said his faith really motivates him.
“There are a lot of great people in my life,” Collins said. “My parents have made me who I am today and people in Weatherford have really inspired and challenged me to be the best person I can be. Hopefully, we instill this in our players and when they leave SWOSU, they can continue to do the same thing.”
Collins said his favorite memory while at SWOSU was winning the Great American Conference Championship in 2015, but he said there are so many more great memories, not just while coaching volleyball.
“Welcoming all the student athletes to campus are memories and it is so hard to pick just one memory,” Collins said. “I have great memories with all the girls who are and were on my teams, but I have great memories with other student athletes as well such as players on the basketball team.”