Tom Allen

Tom  Allen

Special Teams Coordinator/Linebackers

Alma Mater:
Maranatha Baptist College, 1992


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Tom Allen, a 22-year coaching veteran at both the collegiate and high school levels, is in his third season at Ole Miss as linebackers coach and special teams coordinator.

After starting linebacker Denzel Nkemdiche went down with an injury in the opening game of the 2013 season, Allen plugged in junior Serderius Bryant and the results were fantastic as Bryant led the team in tackles (78) and TFLs (12.5), and both he and Nkemdiche earned All-SEC second team postseason honors.

Against No. 6 LSU, senior kicker Andrew Ritter nailed a 41-yard field goal with two seconds remaining to give the Rebels their first win over a top-10 ranked opponent in four years.

Ritter finished the season ranked third in the SEC in field goals made per game and tied for first in field goals made and attempted of 40+ yards. Senior punter Tyler Campbell was fourth in the SEC and 12th nationally with 44.4 yards per punt.

In his first season at Ole Miss in 2012, Allen helped guide kicker Bryson Rose to two SEC Special Teams Player of the Week awards and rank as the SEC's top scorer during league play (8.5 points per game). He also helped Jaylen Walton rank fourth in the SEC and 33rd in the nation in kickoff return average (24.7 ypr).

As linebackers coach, Allen assisted defensive coordinator Dave Wommack in a much-improved Rebel defense. After ranking last in the SEC in total defense in 2011 (419.3 ypg), Ole Miss improved to seventh in 2012 (375.8 ypg). The Rebels finished first in the SEC and fourth nationally in tackles for loss (7.9/game) and second in the SEC and 11th nationally in sacks (2.9/game).

Under Allen's tutelage, Nkemdiche broke onto the scene by leading Ole Miss in tackles (82), TFLs (13.0), forced fumbles (4) and interceptions (3) and was a first team Freshman All-American and second team AP All-SEC selection.

Over the last 20 years of his coaching career, the teams Allen has coached have posted a combined 199-54 record for a .787 winning percentage. That record covers stops at seven different schools in the states of Florida, Tennessee, Indiana, Iowa, Arkansas and Mississippi, and six of those schools had a losing record the season prior to Allen's arrival.

In 2011 with the Arkansas State Red Wolves, Allen assisted a defense that led the Sun Belt Conference in total defense (331.46 ypg), scoring defense (20.77 ppg) and ranked in the top 25 in the NCAA in both categories. Arkansas State also led the league and ranked eighth in the nation in tackles for loss (7.62 pg) and tied for 15th in the NCAA in QB sacks (2.69 pg).

Allen coached first-team all-conference selection Demario Davis and second-team pick Nathan Herrold in 2011. Davis was drafted in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the New York Jets.

Allen came to ASU after spending the 2010 season as the defensive coordinator and linebacker coach at Drake, where he led the Bulldogs to an NCAA FCS No. 36 national ranking in total defense. Under his direction, Drake allowed just 330 yards per game while also ranking No. 6 nationally in rush defense (94.2 ypg), No. 8 in sacks (33), No. 17 in tackles for loss (81), No. 25 in scoring defense (20.4 ppg) and No. 28 in red zone defense. While at Drake, Allen mentored seven All-Pioneer Football League players, one All-America selection and the PFL Defensive Player of the Year.

The New Castle, Indiana, native had equally impressive results as Lambuth's assistant head coach, defensive coordinator and linebackers coach in 2008 and 2009 while the program was under the leadership of Hugh Freeze. He was part of two Mid-South Conference championships, and Lambuth's 2009 squad produced the school's first undefeated regular season (11-0). Nationally, his 2009 defense ranked No. 4 in scoring defense, No. 7 in pass defense and sacks, No. 9 in total defense and No. 12 in third down conversions.

While at Lambuth, Allen mentored eight first team all-conference players, one NAIA All-America selection and a Mid-South Conference Freshman of the Year.

Allen made a stop at Wabash (Ind.) College as its secondary coach and special teams coordinator in 2007, helping the team win the NCAC championship and advance to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III playoffs. He coached three defensive backs that were named to the All-NCAC Team and tutored Wabash's First Team All-NCAC punter.

Prior to joining the college coaching ranks, Allen served as the head football coach at Ben Davis (Indianapolis) High School from 2004-06 and was also the head coach at Temple Heights (Tampa) High School from 1992-94. In between his time at Temple Heights and his elevation to head coach at Ben Davis, Allen was defensive coordinator and linebacker coach at Armwood (Sefner, Fla.) High School from 1995-96 and held the same positions at Marion (Ind.) High School in 1997 and at Ben Davis from 1998-2003.

A 1988 graduate of New Castle High School, Allen earned his bachelor's degree from Maranatha Baptist College in 1992 before going on to earn his master's degree from Indiana University.

Allen and his wife, Tracy, have three children, Hannah, Thomas and Brittney.

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