As Arkansas tries to dig a football program out of a monumental hole having Darren McFadden around and visible is something they need to figure out how to do.
Don’t look here for a title. I’m sure there are rules and regulations as to what they can and cannot do. It would probably violate every recruiting rule there is to have him in front of high school players as often as possible.
And don’t start with the coaching talk.
“Coaching may be a little above my head,” McFadden said Tuesday morning with Tye Richardson and Tommy Craft (The Morning Rush) on ESPN Arkansas. “I put those hours in so long playing football, I have two young kids at home and I missed a lot with my older boys growing up while I was on the road traveling a lot and all that.”
But Florida has done the ambassador type thing with Steve Spurrier, who is one of the icons of the Gators program. They basically wag him out before every game, he does some interviews and just talks about the program.
McFadden just wants to do something connected with the Razorbacks.
“To be able to come around, to be able to do something around the program and help out the guys, pass along some of my knowledge,” he said. “I’d love to be able to do that.”
Few former players stirs as many positive reactions in fans as McFadden. Two runner-up finishes for the Heisman Trophy, the Doak Walker, Maxwell Trophy are all hardware nobody else has won in their time.
Plus, he’s a home-grown talent, which is why the announcement last week of him joining the UA Hall of Honor is particularly special to him.
“Being an Arkansas kid, growing up in Arkansas, bleeding Razorback red (the Hall of Honor) is something you have to put up there at the top,” McFdadden said. “A lot of people might not look at it the same.
“When you look at the College Hall of Fame, Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame, but just going into the Hall of Honor at the University …,” he said. “Growing up and wanting to be there my whole life, just be able to get in there is great.”
You would think the Hogs would find some way to get that kind of enthusiasm — and history of success wearing the uniform — around the program as much as possible.
It shouldn’t be that hard.