Micah Shrewsberry has hired David “Aki” Collins to his staff as an assistant coach the program announced on Wednesday.
Colins most recently spent the past season as the director of basketball operations at New Mexico after previously spending five seasons with the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder as an amateur scout.
“From the time we first worked together at Marshall, Aki is someone who I have watched, studied and learned from,” Shrewsberry said in a statement. “I continued to follow his career and his successful stops at all levels of basketball and those experiences will be very valuable to our program. He fits the culture and values we are working to establish here at Penn State. Aki is a tireless recruiter with connections all over the country, which we’ll utilize to bring in talented student-athletes. I’m excited to add Aki and his family to our Penn State Basketball family!”
Collins is the second official hire for Shrewsberry who first hired former Penn State assistant and most recently Miami assistant Adam Fisher to the staff as associate head coach. Collins and Shrewsberry both worked together at Marshall for two years in the early 2000s before their careers diverged.
“I am truly honored and blessed to receive this opportunity from Coach Shrewsberry,” said Collins. “We have coached each other’s teams from our living rooms and offices. Some of our major career decisions have been hashed out over the phone, at dinner or via text. His character, family values and basketball knowledge, made this an easy decision for me and my family. I am happy for him and honored that he placed his trust in me. I look forward to getting to Happy Valley and getting to work.”
With the Oklahoma City Thunder organization from 2015-20, Collins was an amateur evaluation scout with responsibilities for identification and intelligence for his final three seasons. His first two seasons as an amateur scout included evaluation of collegiate and NBA players in the southeast region of the United States, as well as professional international prospects.
Collins as spent three seasons at Memphis (2012-15) and four at Marquette (2008-12) as an assistant. He was seen as a key recruiting asset at both schools as each program inked well regarded classes during his watch.