One assistant happened to mention community service, positive things like visiting hospitals, and Coach O said fuck that. You get the picture.
This assistant said, by the end of the year, all the assistants hated their jobs, hated working for Coach O, hated Coach O. The players picked up on this too, and it showed especially toward the end of the season. They were a totally beat down bunch of guys who were continuously told they sucked.
With all that, we had some close games.
That's all gone. If Nutt did one thing great at Arkansas, he came in 1997 after Danny Ford, another one of those negative coaches who is always getting on the players, never says anything good, Nutt brought his positive approach, his player's coach approach, the team responded to him, were expected to do nothing that year, they got on a hot streak, were undefeated until the Tennessee game, who was ranked close to #1 in the nation.
The Stoerner fumble-we all know about that. Arkansas had Tennessee beat. They would have then been on a high, and beat Ms State the following week, beat LSU, and faced Tn in the SEC championship game. Tn went on that year and beat Fla. State for the NC. Tennessee backed into that NC. Nutt's team could have well beaten them twice and been the NC. Nutt was one play away from a possible NC-the fumble.
That was Nutt's best year of coaching at Arkansas, best year coaching ever.
This situation this year is eerily like Nutt's first year at Arkansas, come in, take over a beat down team, apply some brotherly love and positive reinforcement, the team responds and plays above themselves.
That's the reason OM will be better this year. Much better.