A former Payson High School wrestling star and honor student has realized his goal of becoming a top-notch high school coach.
Collin Robertson's dream came true Feb. 25 in Pocatello, Idaho's Holt Arena, where the ex-Longhorn led the Centennial High School Patriots to its first state wrestling championship in nearly two decades.
Following the tournament, Robertson -- who is in his second year at the helm of the Patriots' program -- was named the state's 5A Coach of the Year.
That honor thrilled his former PHS coach, Dennis Pirch.
"That's great," Pirch said. "We are all really happy for him and proud of what he's accomplished."
The Patriots entered the final championship matches of the state tournament, trailing by eight points. But, buoyed by Robertson's leadership, Centennial battled back from behind. In the end, four of the team's five finalists won gold medals.
During Robertson's two-year stint at Payson High School in the late 1990s, he lost only one match.
That lone defeat, during his freshman year, occurred in the final round of the state championship tournament. As a sophomore, he was an undefeated state champion.
His three brothers -- Beau, Brock and Tyler -- who were also wrestling stars, preceded Robertson at PHS.
Following Collin's state title win, the Robertson family moved to Utah, where the teenager enrolled at Pleasant Grove High School.
Like Payson High, the school was widely acclaimed for its standout-wrestling program.
Robertson continued to flourish at the Utah school, winning back-to-back state championships. In USA Junior National off-season wrestling competition, he finished second nationally in Greco-Roman and sixth in freestyle.
Robertson was the first Pleasant Grove wrestler to be named a high school All-American.
Following his graduation from Pleasant Grove, Robertson received a full-ride athletic scholarship to Brigham Young University. Competing as a true freshman, Robertson finished third in his weight class at the WAC championships.
Following his freshman season, he left BYU to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While on the mission, the university dropped wrestling from its athletic offerings.
When his mission work was completed, Robertson set out to find a university where he could continue his athletic career. Among the schools that wooed him were Michigan State, University of Pennsylvania, Brown, Arizona State University and Boise State.
Robertson chose Boise State, partly because its campus was located only a few hundred miles from his hometown and parents.
At Boise State, Robertson compiled a 96-24 record.
In three seasons of PAC-10 competition, Robertson finished third, second and was a weight-class champion for the Broncos.
Because he never sat out a redshirt season, Robertson stayed on campus one year after his eligibility expired to earn a bachelor's degree and to work as an assistant coach for the Broncos.
Following his graduation, he said, his goal was to teach and coach either on the high school or collegiate level.