Austin Collie

From MormonWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Austin Collie Mormon pro-football player

Austin Collie was a stand-out player in the Brigham Young University football program, played in both the NFL and the CFL, and is now (2016) retired from professional football. He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes casually called the Mormon or LDS Church).

Collie was born on November 11, 1985, in Hamilton Ontario Canada. His family later moved to California. [1] Collie was a perfectionist even in his youth. The September 2010 issue of LDS Living Magazine reports that in second grade, Collie asked his teaching to replace a coloring picture. He had colored outside the lines and wanted to start over. He offered to watch the class while she went to print off a new picture. His perfectionism is combined with his willingness to give his all. His determination has driven him to invest the effort to excel. Part of this determination is the result of his upbringing -- his parents wouldn't settle for less than 100% effort.

Collie's father, Scott Collie, played football at BYU from 1979-1982 and in the CFL for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. His brother, Zac Collie, also played receiver for the Cougars from 2003-2006.
Collie starred as a wide receiver at Oak Ridge High School and garnered many awards. He was a PrepStar and SuperPrep All-American as well as being voted Northern California's Most Valuable Player. During his senior season he recorded 60 receptions for a total of 978 yards and 18 touchdowns. Collie did all this while maintaining a 4.0 grade point average. Austin was recruited by Stanford, Arizona, Arizona State, Washington State, Oregon State, Colorado, Utah, and UNLV before signing with BYU. [2]

Collie was named the Freshman of the Year by the Mountain West Conference while he was playing at BYU. A major decision came at the end of Collie's freshman year. He hadn't read the Book of Mormon and was casual in his religious practice. Leaving to serve a two-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints could diminish his skills on the playing field. He also worried about leaving the family, since his mother had become ill during his older brother's mission. A discussion with his elder brother Zac brought him to his senses. Zac told him he was selfish, that the reason he played so well was because the Lord was blessing him. Austin turned in his mission papers and was called to serve in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He delved into Book of Mormon study and his testimony started to grow. He began to think of others 24/7 and his testimony exploded.

Collie returned home after his two years of missionary service with his athletic prowess intact. He was named the Most Valuable Player of the Las Vegas Bowl in 2007. He broke many records at BYU. [3] Collie broke the BYU record for receiving yards, was one of the highest rated receivers in college football, and was named MVP for the 2007 Las Vegas Bowl. He was All-Mountain West Conference first team receiver for 2008. In January, 2009, Collie announced that he would forgo his senior year of college ball and enter the pro draft. In April he was selected as the 27th pick in the fourth round by the Colts.

Pro Ball Career

Collie was drafted in round 4 of 2009, and as a rookie player, not only started but exceled on the field. In the league, the average yardage for a receiver is 364.6, but by January 2010, Collie's was 676 yards. [4] He was nominated, also, for rookie of the week. [5] By the end of December, 2009, Collie's 59 receptions ranked fourth among rookies in franchise history. Collie has proven to be a valuable member of the Colts lineup and is considered by some to be one of the best bargain picks of the 2009 NFL draft.

Collie does his homework. He is known for spending countless hours reviewing game film and perfecting his precision timing. Famed quarterback Peyton Manning also drives Collie to perfection. This drive led him to be a rookie star at the Super Bowl, even though the Colts lost to the Saints.

Collie and his wife Brooke had only been married for about a year when Collie was drafted by the Colts. They tried to prepare themselves to be alone and lonely as the only Mormons in an NFL party atmosphere. But they discovered that the Colts strive to maintain an upstanding organization, even having a Bible study session every Tuesday morning. From the star players down to the free agents, the Colts try to make certain their guys are academically sound and respectable in character. Collie's teammates are respectful of his standards. Attending church services during football season, however, is practically impossible. Collie tries to fill in during the week with prayer, scripture reading, and institute classes. He does his best to share the gospel with teammates and with the press.

Austin is cautious with his spending in spite of his high salary. His family has always joked that NFL stands for "Not for Long." A player can be cut at any time, or an injury can end a player's career abruptly. Luckily, fame and fortune are not the center of Collie's life.

Collie played with the Colts until 2012. In August 2013, he was an off-season/practice squad member with the San Francisco 49ers. He signed with the New England Patriots in October 2013 as a free agent. He was released November 5 after playing four games due to a knee injury, but was resigned on December 5. He started for the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League during the 2015 season, then announced his retirement on April 8, 2016. After experiencing four concussions during his pro career, he joined CognitiveFX, an ahead-of-the-curve facility located in Provo, Utah, that deals with the treatment of brain injuries.

He married Brooke Pendleton in 2007 and they have three children.