By Lena Blietz
Chris Collins said he “really got upset” when he learned that longtime mentor, Minnesota Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders had died.
The Northwestern men’s basketball coach briefly played for Saunders when Collins attended Timberwolves training camp after college. Despite being cut, Collins and Saunders remained close throughout their coaching careers. Collins credits Saunders with teaching him some of his coaching techniques.
Collins remembers Saunders as a person who truly loved teaching and coaching the game, and refused to let the little annoyances get in his way. Saunders died from Hodgkin’s lymphoma on Sunday.
Collins’ other mentors include his father, former Chicago Bulls coach Doug Collins; Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski; and Harvard coach Tommy Amaker.
At the Northwestern Basketball Media Day in Evanston on Tuesday, Collins and some of his players talked about the mentors and other influential people in their lives.