Collins's Dad, Harold Illich, introduced him to fly fishing at an early age. Growing up Collins and his family hiked and fished around Rocky Mountain National Park every summer. Eventually, Collins decided that fishing once a year would simply not be enough.
Growing up in the Dallas area, Collins started fishing the White Rock Creek drainage system. He and his friends would crawl around in the creek pretty much every chance they could. They chased panfish, catfish and graduated to carp, fishing mostly ultra light spinning tackle and jigs. As they figured out the fishery, they branched out to the lakes around Dallas/Ft. Worth. Fishing heavier tackle and bigger water leading to bigger fish and a ton of time bass fishing.
After high school, Collins attended Texas A&M University and was fishing even more. He fished some bass tournaments and began guiding. His college years were spent fishing Purtis Creek, Lake Athens, Lake Whitney, Lake Summerville, Gibbons Creek, and Houston County Lake. Pretty soon Central Texas and its bass demanded a business plan. He fished more bass tournaments and started booking more trips.
Collins has been working with Temple Fork Outfitters since 2004 and has been representing their new rods designed by Gary Loomis for the last two years. He regularly fishes Toledo Bend, Sam Rayburn, Lake Ray Roberts, Lake Lavon, Lake Tawokoni, Lake Texoma and a ton of private ponds throughout Dallas. Fishing infected Collins at a young age and he has been addicted to it ever since. He loves it and hopes that his articles show his dedication to Texas fisheries and help you become a better angler.