Coaching was something Ryan Mallett has been interested in and when Mountain Home had an opening it was the perfect fit for the former Arkansas quarterback who is building a house near there.
“It’s kinda in my blood … it runs in my family,” Mallett told Tye Richardson and Tommy Craft (The Morning Rush) on ESPN Arkansas Tuesday morning. “I get to be around the game I love. As far as being over here since me and my fiancee are building a house over here anyway a job came open and the coach that got hired I had a few connections to him so I called him and said I’d get certified and whatever I had to do.
“He said he’d love to have me so we got everything done.”
Mallett was a sociology major mainly because his options were limited after transferring from Michigan in 2008.
“Only three of my 32 credits transferred so that was the only major I could even do to be eligible the year after I sat out,” Mallett said. “It was just what I had to do.”
It will be Mallett’s first coaching gig so he doesn’t really have a coaching style yet but everybody will know he’s around the Bombers.
“I yell a lot,” he said. “A lot of it is encouragement, but I’m loud. I’m just going to do whatever the head coach asks me to do. That’s what I’m here for.”
Mallett was animated quite a bit in his two seasons at Arkansas but moreso in 2009 because he felt he had to be that way.
“That first year I was just like let’s go, let’s get go and I think they saw that the last year so I didn’t have to be like that as much,” Mallett said. “I didn’t have to be rah-rah, I could calm down, handle my business and everybody else could be calm. It really helped me to sit down and look at that stuff with the coaches.”
It paid off that second year with the Razorbacks losing only to Alabama and Auburn in the regular season before a Sugar Bowl loss to Ohio State.
Mallett threw costly interceptions late against the Crimson Tide and the Buckeyes that killed any comeback attempts.
He was asked about those.
“Which one?” he said laughing. “The Alabama game was more of a fluke. I was trying to throw the ball out of bounds and just didn’t get enough on it. Against Ohio State I was doing what I was supposed to against the blitz and they dropped a defensive tackle out that they hadn’t done all year so that was a scheme thing. But I’d take the Alabama one back.”
The one against Alabama, though, is one he’d like to have back.
“If we’d won that game we wouldn’t have been in the Sugar Bowl, we’d been playing for the national championship,” Mallett said, although he’s forgetting the loss to Cam Newton and Auburn that would have still been a major hill to get over.