Tyson Helton is entering his sixth season on the UAB coaching staff after spending three seasons on the staff at the University of Memphis. Helton is in his first season with the Blazers under head coach Garrick McGee.
Helton will coach the UAB running backs while also serving as the recruiting coordinator. He coached the Blazer quarterbacks the past five seasons.
Under Helton's guidance, Joe Webb developed into one of the most prolific quarterbacks in NCAA history. In 2009 Webb became the first player in NCAA history to pass for 2,000 yards and rush for 1,000 in back-to-back seasons.
He finished the season ranked sixth nationally in total offense at 310.5 yards per game and was No. 9 in pass efficiency. Webb also shattered his own Conference USA record for rushing yards by a quarterback with 1,427, ranking No. 1 in the country among signal-callers.
The Blazer offense tallied 5,111 yards, the most in school history. Last season UAB again had a potent offense as the unit finished with 5,074 yards, second-highest in school history. Under Helton's tutelage, quarterback Bryan Ellis passed for 2,940 yards and 25 touchdowns.
At Memphis, Helton coached special teams and tight ends. While working on the Tigers' staff under head coach Tommy West, the Memphis special teams prospered under his guidance.
In 2005, UM kicker Stephen Gostkowski, now with the NFL's New England Patriots, was responsible for nearly one-third of the team's scoring and was named the Conference USA Special Teams Player of the Year.
Gostkowski is Memphis' all-time leading scorer with 369 points and was the first kicker chosen in the 2006 NFL Draft. Prior to joining the program at Memphis, Helton spent four years as a member of June Jones' staff at Hawai'i. He arrived on the Manoa campus in 2000 as a graduate assistant and worked with the Warrior special teams.
In 2001, Helton's first season as a full-time coach, the Warriors led the nation in kickoff return yardage and broke the NCAA record for average gain per return (30.3). Under Helton, return specialist Chad Owens tied the NCAA record with two kick returns for a touchdown in a game and also broke the NCAA record for most yards gained on kick return.
Helton, the brother of Southern California assistant coach Clay Helton and the son of UAB offensive coordinator Kim Helton, had just completed his fourth season as a member of Jones' Hawai'i staff when he was hired at Memphis.
Helton, 34, earned his bachelor's degree in business at Houston in 1999 after a four-year career with the Cougars. He and his wife, April, have two daughters, Shelby Grace (7) and Presley (4), and twin boys Clay and Cole (2).