Photo by Kirby Lee, USA Today
Clay Helton, who has been USC football team’s interim head coach was named the team’s permanent coach this morning, according to a tweet from the school’s athletic department.
Until Helton arrived at Clements High in Sugar Land, Texas he was a baseball player because his parents did not allow him to play organized football.
Helton played quarterback and made his way into a starting position his senior season. David Sparkman, one of his high school coaches, said we would ask, ‘What do you think?’ He’d say, ‘Coach, I think we should do this.’ And he was smart enough to get it done.” Helton’s knowledge of the game defnitely helped him grow as a coach.
His first coaching job was at Duke as a graduate assistant then made his way to the staff in 1996. Helton moved on to coach with his father at Houston for three years, and then joined the staff at Memphis, where he spent 10 seasons. In 2009 he coached at Arkansas State then finally landed a job at USC in 2010.
Helton was named interim coach at USC on Oct. 11, 2015, following the dismissal of Steve Sarkisian. USC is 5-2 since Helton became interim coach, and 5-1 in the Pac-12. That record was good enough to help them win the Pac-12 South Division, and get them to the Pac-12 Championship on Saturday against Stanford.