Darren McFadden isn’t afraid of a little combat with the fans.
The Arkansas legend took to social media earlier this year when some Razorbacks fans were going what he deemed as too far in attacks against coach Sam Pittman, then-offensive coordinator Dan Enos and the program as a whole. On Thursday, McFadden gave his first public thoughts on Enos’ replacement, new OC Kenny Guiton.
“If a coach is bringing great energy out there, I think that just kind of trickles down on the players,” McFadden said. “When you’re around a coach that’s I guess more laid back, or not as intense about the game or however you want to call it, that trickles down on the players. I think a lot of that showed this year when you see the offense out there on the field.”
Pittman, who fired Enos the day after Arkansas lost to Mississippi State, 7-3, said one of the things that stood out to him was the lack of fire the roster had with Enos in command. He isn’t as much of a rah-rah guy, whereas Guiton is a bit more gregarious.
Little will matter, though, if Arkansas’ offense doesn’t actually improve. The staff hopes limiting the playbook and the return of preseason All-American running back Rocket Sanders will show concrete results against Florida on Saturday. Sanders is expected to play for the first time in almost a month and it will come in Guiton’s first game.
That may not be a coincidence.
“Coaches like that, you really want to go out there and play hard for them and put it on the line for them,” McFadden said. “I think the guys kind of feel that from Coach Guiton and I think that’ll be something great for them.”