Basketball champ coaching Firebirds eyes another former Jayhawk as his assistant coach – The Lawrence Times

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Both Americans and 2008 National Champion, Sherwin Collins, plan to bring in a former Kansas basketball teammate to help coach the Free State boys’ basketball team next season.

Upon approval by the school and school district, former Jayhawk Tyshawn Taylor will join the Firebirds.


“Taichowon is the guy I want to bring in,” Collins said. “The development of the guy is nothing compared to anything. He has been here working and helping us. He is very fit for sure.”

Taylor played for the University of Kansas from 2008 to 2012 before being drafted to the 41st place in the 2012 NBA Draft. After 2014, he played for teams around the world before announcing his retirement in October 2021.

Mac Moore, KSHSAA Covered Image / Contribution Chiron Collins, a pointer, leads a basketball camp at Free State High School. To the left is Techon Taylor.

Taylor was helping out at summer camp this week in the Free State. Collins said Taylor only applied recently, but he sees no reason why the school should not hire him.

Regardless, Taylor is excited about his potential role on the cast.

“Hired or not, Sherwin,” he said, “this is my son.” “So I’ll be around to kind of help, giving some of my experience so to speak. I’ve been coaching my own guys since I’ve been in Lawrence.”

If all goes as planned, Taylor will be added to the already skilled coaching staff that includes Jamar Reese and another new addition at Adam Heslinga, pending approval by the school board.

After just six days into his coaching career, the players’ efforts have thrilled Collins – especially the energy from the lower tier and leadership from the upper tier.

Mac Moore, KSHSAA Covered Image / Contribution Sherwin Collins cheering on the players at camp Tuesday. Assistant coach Jamar Reese in the background.

“I’m putting in a lot of effort,” Collins said. “They’re trying really hard. I think the best things I’ve got for me are what I’ve played with and what I’ve done playing wisely. So I have respect at that level. They’re trying really hard, they’re breaking their tail, man, and that’s all I can ask for, especially As a new coach.

Collins was happy to start his coaching career at Lawrence, but said he’s ready to apply his basketball philosophy wherever he is.

“I’m excited. It doesn’t matter where you put me, I feel good and excited,” he said. “I think I trust my profession, you know, the things I’ve learned. So, I’m ready to start this up. I’m ready to put my philosophy on these guys.”


Collins thanked the Lawrence community, the Free State administration and its players for their support during his new role.

For him, Taylor said, “to gain experience just by watching him (Collins) grow as a coach, helping him along the way and trying to get my own experience and build my resume.”

The Lawrence School Board of Directors formally approved Collins’ hiring on June 13 without discussion, a standard practice, as part of a district staff report that includes several appointments and job changes.

Free State management declined to comment on Taylor’s application and hiring process.

Note: Reporter Jack Ritter is the basketball director at Lawrence High School.

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