UNIVERSITY PARK, Pennsylvania. – Penn State head football coach james franklin announced the hiring of Stacy Collins as Special Teams Coordinator/Outside Linebacker/Nickels Coach for the Nittany Lions.
“We are thrilled to welcome Stacy Collins to Happy Valley,” Franklin said. “As a veteran coach, Stacy brings a wide variety of experiences to our staff having served as a head coach, defensive coordinator and special teams coordinator during his career. He will bring significant value to our program and has a great extensive knowledge of special teams. and has found great success as a coordinator. His special teams coaching style will allow us to continue our strong tradition as a special teams unit. I am delighted that Stacy, his wife Mandi and their four daughters are joining our Penn State Football family.”
“I am extremely excited to work under Coach Franklin and join the Penn State family,” Collins said. “I look forward to growing and growing our special teams units that have seen success during Coach’s tenure. I am also excited to work with Coach Diaz and the defensive staff to continue to build on the Penn State’s strong defensive tradition. My family and I can’t wait to begin this new chapter in Happy Valley.”
Collins, who has 24 years of college coaching experience, joins the Nittany Lions after spending the 2021 season as Boise State’s special teams coordinator and peak coach.
During the 2021 campaign, Collins’ special teams unit blocked three punts, tied for seventh in the nation, and four kicks overall to rank ninth in FBS. Of the three blocked punts, two were returned for touchdowns. Under Collins, the Broncos finished fifth in the nation and led the Mountain West Conference in punt returns with 15.77 yards per return. Additionally, Boise State’s kickoff return defense was second in the MWC and 36and in FBS with an average of 19.03.
Collins guided kicker Jonah Dalmas to first-team All-Mountain West accolades and was a Lou Groza semi-finalist after scoring 26 of 28 goals, including a school-record 26 consecutive attempts and 38 of 39 extra points . Punt returner Stefan Cobbs earned second-team All-Mountain West honors. He posted an 81-yard punt return for a touchdown.
Prior to Boise State, Collins spent five seasons (2016-20) at Utah State, including the 2020 season as co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach. He served as special teams coordinator and running backs coach in 2019, coached inside linebackers in 2017-18 and served as special teams coordinator in 2016.
In the 2019 campaign, kicker Dominik Eberle was a first-team All-Mountain West and an honorable mention Pro Football Focus All-American. He set 14 school records during his career and signed a free agent contract with the Las Vegas Raiders. Savon Scarver was honored with the All-Mountain West first team as a return specialist, while Collins was named Mountain West Special Teams Coordinator of the Year.
Utah State led the nation in takeouts (32), interceptions (22), three forced outs per game (5.69) in 2018 and was ranked third nationally with six touchdowns defensive. Collins mentored sophomore David Woodward, a Pro Football Focus All-America first-team winner and Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year.
Collins served as the Aggies’ defensive coordinator for the New Mexico Bowl, a 52-13 win over North Texas, in 2018 and Utah State finished No. 22 in the Associated Press poll.
In 2017, Utah State ranked 19th nationally in passing yards allowed (182.5 per game) and was in the top 10 in defensive touchdowns, forced fumbles, and forced turnovers. In the 2016 season, Collins helped Utah State rank third in the Mountain West in kickoff return defense (19.47 yards per return).
Prior to Utah State, Collins served as head coach at Division II South Dakota School of Mines for four seasons and led the Hardrockers to winning seasons in 2013 and 2015.
In 2014, the South Dakota School of Mines set single-season school records for first downs, passing yards, and total yards. During the 2014-2015 seasons, 14 student-athletes earned all-conference honors.
Collins spent the 2011 season as special teams coordinator at Portland State when placekicker Zach Brown was an All-American.
From 2008 to 2010, Collins served as special teams coordinator and linebacker/defensive line coach at Central Washington. Placekicker Garrett Rolsma was an All-American and two-time all-conference selection for the Wildcats.
Other stops on Collins’ journey include Southern Oregon (defensive coordinator, 2007), Idaho State (linebackers, 2005-06), Western Washington (linebackers, 2003-04/coordinator teams, 2004), the South Dakota School of Mines (defensive coordinator/safety coordinator, 2002) and Western Oregon (linebackers, 1998-2001).
At Western Washington in 2004, Collins coached punter Mike Koenen, who played 10 NFL seasons with the Atlanta Falcons and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
In addition to his university experience, Collins coached for three seasons (1999-2001) the Vienna Vikings (Austria) of the European American Football Federation. The Vikings have won the Austrian National Championships in all three seasons.
Collins played linebacker at Western Oregon for four seasons (1993-97). He obtained a bachelor’s degree in physical education (1998) and a master’s degree in education (2001).
Originally from Sutherlin, Oregon, Collins and his wife, Mandi, have four daughters, Kayla, Mackenzie, Kylee and Mackenna.
Year at Penn State: First of all
Hometown: Sutherlin, OR
Education: Western Oregon, 1998 – BS physical education; 2001 – MS Education
Family: Wife: Mandi; Girls: Kayla, Mackenzie, Kylee, Mackenna
2022-pres. – Penn State (special teams coordinator/outside linebacker/nickels)
2021 – Boise State (special teams/edge coordinator)
2020 – Utah State (defensive/safety co-coordinator)
2019 – Utah State (special teams coordinator/running backs)
2017-18 – Utah State (inside linebackers)
2016 – Utah State (Special Teams Coordinator)
2012-15 – South Dakota School of Mines (Head Coach/Special Teams Coordinator)
2011 – Portland State (Assistant Head Coach/Special Teams Coordinator)
2008-10 – Central Washington (special teams coordinator/defensive line/linebackers)
2007 – Southern Oregon (Defensive Coordinator/Recruiting Coordinator)
2005-06 – Idaho State (linebackers)
2004 – Western Washington (special teams coordinator/linebackers)
2003 – Western Washington (linebackers)
2002 – South Dakota School of Mines (Defensive/Special Teams Coordinator)
1999-2001 – Vienna (Austria) (defensive coordinator/interim head coach)
1998-2001 – Western Oregon (special teams coordinator/linebackers)
Bowl Games / Post-season as a coach
- 2021 Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl (game canceled)
- Frisco Bowl 2019
- 2018 New Mexico Bowl
- 2017 NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl
- 2009 NCAA Division II Playoffs
- 2008 NCAA Division II Playoffs