EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Chris Collins won his coaching debut for Northwestern as Drew Crawford scored 25 points to help the Wildcats beat Eastern Illinois 72-55 in their season opener on Saturday.
Clapping his hands at times and consistently barking out instructions, Collins was a ball of energy while standing in front of the Northwestern bench for most of the night. The 39-year-old Collins, who grew up near campus in suburban Northbrook, pumped his right arm after JerShon Cobb came up with a big steal that led to a layup for Dave Sobolewski at the beginning of the second half.
Cobb had nine points and eight assists for the Wildcats, who beat Lewis 57-46 on Wednesday in their only exhibition game. Sanjay Lumpkin was 3 for 3 from 3-point range for nine points, and Alex Olah added eight points and eight rebounds.