Assistant Coach (DB)/Co-Special Teams Coordinator
Eastern New Mexico, 2000
Mike Walton is in his third season as a member of the SFA staff, working with the Lumberjacks’ defensive backs while serving as SFA’s co-special teams coordinator.
SFA’s safeties continued to make great strides in 2015, led by the emergence of Patrick Martin, earning honorable mention all-Southland Conference honors. Martin was tied for second on the team with 52 tackles and was among the team’s best with five pass breakups. Trevon Smith and Marlon Walls each recorded a pair of interceptions in their breakout seasons with transfers Germod Williams and Zack Starnes having productive first seasons.
From a special teams standpoint, SFA was among the conference leaders in returns, led by Robert Sylvester’s 21.1 kick return average. The ‘Jacks were also one of a few teams in the nation to not have a kick blocked in 2015 while registering five blocked kicks of their own.
SFA’s defensive secondary was one of the most improved units in all of the Southland Conference in 2014, allowing 222 passing yards per game as opposed to 338 the season before. Sophomore Patrick Martin earned honorable mention All-SLC honors in 2014 with senior Trey Vallier anchoring the Lumberjack safeties.
Walton comes to Nacogdoches after spending three seasons as the defensive coordinator at Angelo State, helping establish the Rams as one of the Lone Star Conference’s top defensive units.
Prior to his time in San Angelo, Walton also spent time coaching at the New Mexico Military Institute and Eastern New Mexico as well as three seasons at rival Sam Houston State. Walton was the co-defensive coordinator with NMMI after serving as the special teams and recruiting coordinator for the Bearkats. He earned his first defensive coordinator job with Eastern New Mexico in 2006 after filling a number of positions for the Greyhounds.
A four-year starter at Eastern New Mexico, Walton was a two-time All-American at linebacker, holding the program’s single season (155) and career (515) tackle record. He earned his degree in special education in 2000 before attaining his master’s degree in sport administration in 2002.
Walton and his wife, Alicia, have two daughters, Lucia and Grace Marie.
The Walton File
Hometown: Earth, Texas
High School: Springlake-Earth
College: Eastern New Mexico (2000, 2002)
Playing Experience: Two-time All-American at linebacker, program season and career tackles record holder
Family: Alicia (wife); Lucia and Grace Marie (daughters)
2014-Present: Stephen F. Austin • Co-Special Teams Coordinator (Safeties)
2011-13: Angelo State • Defensive Coordinator
2010: New Mexico Military Institute • Defensive Coordinator
2007-09: Sam Houston State • Defensive Coordinator
2001-06: Eastern New Mexico • Defensive Coordinator/multiple assignments