Offensive Coaching Staff
Josh Lawson enters his first year at Arkansas Tech, after spending a pair of seasons at Stephen F. Austin, including the last season as defensive coordinator.
In his final year in Nacogdoches, Lawson mentored all-Southland Conference safety Alize Ward, who ranked 17th in the league with 7.2 tackles per game. Aretavious Hendrix and Trenton Gordon were all-Southland Conference honorable mention picks under his tutelage.
During Lawson’s first year in Texas’ oldest town, overseeing the Lumberjack linebackers and overseeing kickoffs on special teams, his linebacker corps featured a trio of talented players in junior Ryan Woods and sophomores Anthony Jacobs and Teddy Britton. The three combined for 160 total tackles, including 17 tackles for loss, providing a stout wall in the heart of defensive coordinator Jeff Byrd’s defensive scheme. Lawson’s linebackers played a pivotal role in helping SFA to rank fifth in the league in red zone defense as opponents scored less than 80 percent of time when reaching the Lumberjacks’ 20-yard line. The group also created quarterback pressure and contributed in pass coverage, aiding SFA to allow just 210 passing yards per game in conference play, which was fifth-best in the Southland Conference in that category.
Lawson previously spent eight seasons at fellow GAC institution Southern Arkansas, including his last five as the Muleriders’ defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach. Under Lawson’s guidance, Southern Arkansas saw significant improvement defensively, allowing just 24.4 points per game and 319.9 yards per contest in 2016.
In his first season as defensive coordinator in 2012, Lawson helped engineer a significant turnaround in the Southern Arkansas’ defensive efforts. The Muleriders ranked at least 50 spots higher in the national rankings in all five major defensive categories from 2011, including ranking sixth nationally in rushing defense per game, a rise of 120 spots.
During his time in Magnolia, Arkansas, Lawson also worked with the Muleriders’ linebackers before making the transition to defensive backs prior to the 2015 season. In his eight seasons at Southern Arkansas, Lawson saw over a dozen of his players earn All-Great American Conference honors, including All-American defensive back Don Unamba, who spent time with the NFL’s St. Louis Rams and the CFL’s Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders. Lawson was in charge of recruiting efforts in both the East Texas and Dallas areas for the Muleriders.
Prior to his time at Southern Arkansas, Lawson spent two seasons at UAB, working with the Blazers’ linebackers. His two years in Birmingham, Alabama, were preceded by a one-year stint at fellow FCS institution Idaho State of the Big Sky Conference, where he served as the Bengals’ defensive line coach. Lawson also spent one year at Walker High School in Jasper, Alabama, filling the roles of co-offensive coordinator, special teams coordinator and wide receivers coach.
Lawson began his coaching career at Alabama, his alma mater, in 2001, where he was a student assistant coach for two seasons before stepping into a graduate assistant position for the 2003 and 2004 campaigns. While in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Lawson assisted in two top-20 recruiting classes and was a part of the Crimson Tide’s 2001 Independence Bowl and 2004 Music City Bowl teams.
A native of Berry, Alabama, Lawson earned both of his degrees from Alabama, achieving his bachelor’s degree in secondary education in 2003, followed by his master’s in sport management in 2004. He is married to the former Meredith Jones.
Doug Ruse begins his tenure at Arkansas Tech with 30 years of coaching experience under his belt. Most recently, Ruse spent three seasons as the offensive coordinator at Tulane University. Ruse also boasts coaching stints at Georgia Southern, Sam Houston State, Western Illinois, Arkansas State, Northwestern, and Northwest Missouri State. Ruse has led five teams to playoffs, including a national runner-up team in 2012 at Sam Houston State. That same year, Ruse was a finalist for the FCS Coordinator of the Year award. Additionally, Ruse has coached four conference champion teams and has coached in three bowl games. Finally, during his time at Western Illinois, Ruse coached the Missouri Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Year, who was also a Walter Payton Award finalist.
Ruse earned both his Bachelor of Science in physical education and his Master of Science in health, physical education, recreation, and dance from Northwest Missouri State.
Defensive Line Coach
Kurt Corbin enters his seventh year on the staff at Arkansas Tech University, returning to his alma mater in 2013. Corbin was previously a member of the Wonder Boys staff in 2005, serving as wide receivers coach.
After overseeing the strength and conditioning efforts for the Wonder Boys in the 2013 season, Corbin was elevated to co-Defensive Coordinator in 2014.
The defensive performance in 2014 was stellar, as the Wonder Boys held opponents to 344 yards per game and saw three players - Logan Genz, Wesley McKinney, and Shai Kobayashi earn all-Region honors, while Kobayashi picked up an all-America nod.
Tech continued its impressive defensive performance in 2015, as Tech was the No. 2 defense in the Great American Conference, allowing a paltry 21.8 points per game. Genz earned honorable mention all-America squads after being named Defensive Player of the Year. Demetris Ford also earned an all-region honor.
2016 saw the Wonder Boys finish fourth in the conference in scoring defense, allowing less than 25 points per game. Three members of Tech's defense received all-conference honors, including Ford's second straight appearance on the All-GAC team.
The 2017 Wonder Boys ranked second in the GAC in scoring defense (20.8 ppg), fourth in total defense (368.1 ypg) and first in pass defense efficiency (111.0). Tech also led the conference in opponent fourth-down percentage (27.3) and ranked second in sacks (24). KJ Reid and Cua' Rose were both named to the All-GAC First Team and D2CCA All-Super Region 3 First Team.
The 2018 Wonder Boys saw three all-conference picks in first team selections KJ Reid and Cua' Rose as well as honorable mention pick Andrew Craig. Tech boasted the GAC's fifth-ranked scoring defense, surrendering 24.5 points per contest.
Prior to returning to Tech, Corbin spent 2009-2012 as the defensive line coach/recruiter at Stephen F. Austin State University, guiding a unit that recorded more sacks over his three-year tenure than any other unit in Division I. The Lumberjacks won back-to-back Southland Conference titles, and during his tenure finished among the nation's top-20 in tackles for loss and top-10 in sacks.
Before joining the SFA staff, Corbin spent two seasons as a defensive coach at Northwestern State. During his time in Natchitoches, La., Corbin helped produced one of the league's more intimidating defenses.
In 2006, the Demons led the league in six defensive categories, including total defense, rushing defense, pass defense efficiency, opponent first downs and opponent third downs. Corbin helped produce two of the better players in the nation in All-Americans Ed Queen and Tori Collins.
Corbin coached the Demon linebackers and took on the added responsibility of defensive coordinator the following season. Northwestern State posted similar numbers leading the SLC in four defensive categories. The Demons finished the year tops in the league in total defense, pass defense, opponent first downs and opponent third downs.
Corbin began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Northwestern State in 2001. After spending his first two seasons with the Demons, he was named the defensive line and linebackers coach at Arkansas-Monticello.
Corbin received his bachelor's degree from Arkansas Tech in 2001. He graduated with a master's degree from Northwestern State in 2003.
Offensive Line Coach / Recruiting Coordinator
Tommy Crayton enters his first season on the Arkansas Tech staff, having joined the Wonder Boys football program in January, 2019.
He spent the 2018 season as an offensive graduate assistant coach at Texas State, working primarily with the offensive line. His recruiting territory was north Arkansas and southwest Texas.
Crayton spent the 2017 season as the running backs coach at Florida Institute of Technology. He also worked with special teams. Crayton went to Florida Tech after working with the offensive line at Southeastern Oklahoma in 2016.
Before his first stint working alongside Atterberry at Southeastern, he coached running backs and assisted with special teams at MacMurray College. He began his coaching career as a defensive intern at Midland University.
A native of Austin Texas, Crayton played two years at Independence Community College before moving on to Midland University. He earned a bachelor’s degree in human performance sports management at Midland in 2012 and a master’s degree in sports studies and athletic administration at Southeastern Oklahoma State.
Brandon Smith enters his first year at Arkansas Tech, joining coach Bo Atterberry's staff in January 2019.
Smith reunites with Atterberry after spending the 2018 season coaching linebackers at Southeastern Oklahoma. The 2018 Savage Storm defense ranked sixth nationally in total defense, and linebacker Seu Luafatasaga earned all-Great American Conference honors.
Prior to his time in Durant, Smith spent five years at East Texas Baptist University, beginning as the director of football operations and earning promotions along the way, moving from cornerbacks coach in 2013-14 to safeties coach in 2015, and defensive coordinator in 2016. He also served as the team's lead recruiting coordinator from 2014-17.
During his time at ETBU, Smith had the opportunity to serve two summers as a guest coach with the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League, and twice earned the NFL Bill Walsh Coaching Fellowship, working with the Los Angeles Rams and coach Bill Johnson and also the Dallas Cowboys and coach Joe Baker.
Smith started his collegiate coaching career at West Texas A&M, after spending time as a high school coach.
He earned his bachelor's degree from Midwestern State in 2010 and his master's degree from West Texas A&M in 2012.
Wide Receivers Coach
Ryan Trevathan joins the Arkansas Tech staff in January, 2019 as Wide Receivers Coach, after two years as offensive coordinator at Pearl River Community College.
Prior to his time at Pearl River, he spent two years as the offensive coordinator at Northeast Mississippi Community College.
After his inaugural season in Poplarville, eight offensive Wildcats signed with four-year programs, including offensive linemen Gerald Bell (Troy) and Tyrin Arceneaux (Nicholls State), Jamarcus Holmes (Tusculum College), Tremaine Chatman (Tusculum College), Tyler Harris (North Carolina-Pembroke), receiver Malcolm Staten (Arkansas-Monticello) and running back Caleb Batie (Missouri Southern State). One of PRCC's biggest success stories in 2017 was the emergence of quarterback Markevion Quinn. The dynamic quarterback didn't hold a four-year offer out of high school, but after passing for 943 yards and six touchdowns and running for 879 yards and 17 scores, Quinn signed with Memphis prior to the start of the 2018 season.
The Wildcat offense proved to be one of the best in school history with Trevathan's guidance. PRCC's 3,822 total yards were the eighth-most in school history, while the team's 2,399 yards rushing were the most since 1994.
Trevathan is a native of Jonesboro, Arkansas, and graduated from Jonesboro High in 2007. He was an undergraduate student assistant coach at Arkansas State during his four years at ASU, graduating in Dec. 2011 with a degree in physical education.
He spent three seasons at Ole Miss, serving as a graduate assistant in 2012-13 and working specifically with tight ends before becoming a full staff member in 2014 as a quality control coach. During his time on the Rebel sideline, Ole Miss produced two of its three best offensive seasons in school history, including a record 6,153 yards in 2013. Under Trevathan's tutelage, Ole Miss saw tight end Evan Engram become an All-SEC and All-American selection before leaving Oxford as a first-round NFL draft pick by the New York Giants.
Trevathan then moved on to Northeast Mississippi Community College, where he served as offensive coordinator. During his debut season in Booneville in 2015, Trevathan's offense averaged 301 yards per game and scored 24 total touchdowns. The Tigers improved drastically in his encore season, averaging 366.1 yards and finding the end zone a total of 31 times. In just two seasons with NEMCC, Trevathan saw 12 offensive players go on to four-year schools, including quarterbacks Mason Cunningham (Liberty) and Kendrick Doss (Jacksonville State), running backs Kenzie Phillips (Mississippi College) and Tiberias Lampkin (Mississippi College), offensive linemen Jo'Quarius Savage (Louisiana-Monroe), Ethan Smart (Purdue) and Ryan Baysinger (Arkansas-Monticello), tight end Ross Painter (Arkansas State), and receivers Jaylon Fair (Oklahoma-Panhandle), Joe Horn, Jr. (Missouri Western), Donta Armstrong (West Alabama) and Khalid Kornegay (Regina).
Trevathan and his wife, Morgan, have two children, Kaden (10) and Hudson (3).
Graduate Assistant / Defensive Line
Graduate Assistant / Defensive Backs