RECRUITING: Helton twins the perfect fit in Iowa State system

In just a few weeks time following Iowa State’s hire of new offensive line coach Ryan Clanton, a common theme arose in what he utilizes with his coaching philosophy.


It’s the reoccurring message that pops up in almost every piece of content put out on Iowa State social media channels, and it just happens to be something that a unique pair of commitments to the program’s 2024 recruiting class share already with the position coach.

“They’re awesome to coach,” Centennial High School coach Matt Logan said of Wade and Brent Helton. “They love the game of football, it’s pretty much all they do – school and football. They’re old-school, throwback-type guys that have that nasty streak in them that love to knock the crap out of people.”

It all came together at the right time for the twins, who both stand at 6-foot-5 and wanted to attend college together.

Logan’s coached twins prior in his career, but has never seen anything like the Helton’s.

“Not to this high level of athlete,” Logan said. “I was excited they want to come play for me, that’s for sure.”

When asked about their aspirations, they’ll say they wanted to play football in the Big 10 or Big 12. They don’t mention the phrase, ‘power 5.’

It’s the perfect mentality for a room led by Clanton that is going through these changes with new players.

“They had a lot of opportunities and wanted to make sure they got the right fit for them.” Logan said. “We’re all big fans, at least here at our school, with Iowa State – especially with the coaching staff. Coach Campbell and his staff are amazing. They’ve recruited several of our players and we finally have a couple that are committed and will actually be heading there.”

Along with A.J. Burton and Dontrell Holt, the 2024 class is packed with offensive linemen, which currently make up 1/4th of the committed athletes in the group.

As is the case when any new coach arrives, there’s a shift in culture, or style that they teach and it’s no different here.

Iowa State has set this up to be a reloaded and revamped group if things play out as planned.

“We think they do as good of a job as anyone in the country in terms of coaching, recruiting and running a top-notch program,” Logan said.

“I told the twins, ‘you couldn’t have asked for a more elite head coach than what you’re going to have.'”