Playing football has always been important to one Southern Methodist University football player.
For senior Andrew McKinney football has always been a passion, not it has become fun for his senior season.
A man without a definite position to call his own the past few seasons, McKinney finds himself back at running back, the place he started out four years ago.
"I haven't had a lot of position security over the last few seasons," McKinney laughed in a recent interview with PonyStampede.com. "That has all changed with the new coaching staff."
New head coach June Jones met with McKinney and told the talented runner that he would be a perfect fit for his run and shoot offense.
McKinney, a 6-foot-4 255-pound athlete who runs a 4.6 forty, is happy to see his talents are finally being utilized.
"I'm having an awesome time," McKinney said. "Football is fun again, after the last four years I didn't think having fun was possible. Coach Jones and his coaches are fun to play for."
McKinney gives the new coaching staff all the credit for the change in attitude with the players and the change of atmosphere.
"The coaches have created a new and positive attitude, its exciting times at SMU," McKinney said. "Before it was a miserable time at practice, now its fun. Coach (Wes) Suan is such a great coach and man, I'm learning so much from him."
McKinney has excelled on special teams the past three seasons and now feels that he is stronger and in the best shape of his five year career at SMU.
"I lost 10 pounds during the spring," McKinney said. "Everyone is getting in great shape; I'm in the best condition I have ever been in. I'm a lot stronger, Coach Jones has brought a new attitude to every phase of our program including the off season program."
To get respect you have to earn respect and according to McKinney that's exactly what the new coaching staff has done.
"Coach Jones treats us like grown men," McKinney said. "He and his coaching staff have earned everyone's respect."
McKinney is looking forward to the fall season more this year than ever before.
"We actually having something to look forwards to," McKinney said. "We are all confident that we are going to win and win this fall. We are extremely excited; you can't help but want to play your heart out for this coaching staff."
When McKinney isn't playing football he is busy playing guitar and singing in his own rock band.
"I like football," McKinney said. "Music is my true love. Well I love football now too, this should be a fun fall."