FAYETTEVILLE, Ar. (KNWA/KFTA) – Linnie Malkin brought the fireworks when she stepped up to the plate last season, hitting a team high 22 home runs for the Razorbacks.
Now, she has stepped into a different role with the Hogs this year as she traded in home runs for high-fives.
“It’s just been an amazing opportunity to learn form this side of it cause it’s stuff I didn’t really learn playing. It’s kinda like hey, your here to play but now being a student of the game, it’s so much fun,” Malkin said.
Who better to learn the ins and outs of running a successful softball program than Courtney Deifel herself?
“I’ve learned more about the way she coaches as being a human rather the softball piece of it. I think she’s one of the best at that. I’ve learned how to keep my composure and teach the girls how to be great young adults and great young women,” Malkin said.
Even though she’s just getting started in the coaching world, she feels like her recent experience playing with the Hogs has helped her in her new role.
“I have been here for almost six, seven years, and being with these coaches I kind of know all the ins and outs so it’s helpful for them to be like hey I think she knows what she’s doing here for the Razorbacks and for this program, even small little details about what I’ve experienced and how it can help them,” Malkin said.
Being only a few months removed from the team means Malkin has some close connections with the veterans on the squad.
“I think they treat me more so of a teammate who’s now just not playing on the team, which is good I like it a lot because they aren’t timid around me like you can be around other coaches, but they still ask me if they need anything,” Malkin said.
Malkin has learned some valuable lessons thus far in her coaching career, but what’s the biggest piece of advice she’s imparted on the team so far?
“It’s only softball, even though it is our life, it’s only softball and that it really goes by fast, so just learning from the bad moments and the good moments, it’s always a learning experience and how they can be better as people and as players,” Malkin said.