Audrey Scott, '23
I have been raised to be a University of Nebraska-Lincoln football fan. While this title was held with pride by my parents’ and grandparents’ generations, it has become somewhat embarrassing in the last two decades. Despite the fact that Nebraska has, quite frankly, been awful since approximately 2000—and especially since Scott Frost was hired as Head Coach in 2017—I have remained a Cornhusker at heart.
I remember the initial excitement from when Frost was first hired. Fans were thrilled by the prospect of a former record-winning Cornhusker quarterback returning home to bring his alma mater glory. The governor of Nebraska even dubbed September 1st “Scott Frost Day” in honor of the new coach. That excitement, however, was short lived for many. For the first time in UNL's history, the football season started with six straight losses. Scott Frost finished his first season 4–8, the worst single season record of any Nebraska head football coach in more than fifty years. Additionally, Nebraska did not play in a single bowl game during Frost’s four seasons.
Despite the less-than-desirable results of Nebraska’s first season coached by Frost, fans still had hope that the team could recuperate and rebound the next season. Unfortunately, this was not the case. After the second—and then third and then fourth—bad season, the once-loved coach stopped being so highly regarded throughout the state. Many believed that his fourth season as head coach should have been his last; however, UNL decided to resurrect Frost’s contract for a fifth season anyway.
Not surprisingly, Frost’s fifth season did not have an extremely promising start. Despite a hopeful first half of the game, Nebraska lost to Northwestern in their season opener in Dublin, Ireland. Next, they pulled out a win against North Dakota. While the scoreboard was in their favor, Nebraska did not play as well against the team as they were predicted to. In the third game of the season, Nebraska played Georgia Southern and lost by two points a game that they were projected to win by 23.5. To many Nebraska fans, this was a breaking point, and it turned out it was the same for the university.
The loss to Georgia Southern was a hard one. I was watching from a hotel room in Philadelphia while also trying to finish my statistics homework, but that agenda was soon overturned as I watched the game. I was truly slack jawed by Nebraska’s less-than-fabulous playing in the last four minutes. The next morning, Nebraska announced that Frost had been fired from his position as head coach.
I think Nebraska made the wrong call by firing Frost three weeks before October 1st. In fact, I think Nebraska should have fired Frost at the end of last football season, which would have given the players the opportunity to adapt to a new coach and adjust their playing strategy. Instead, by firing him three games into the 2022 season, UNL lost $8 million. If they had waited just three weeks, they could have saved money that could have been better spent on the next staff or other facets of the football program. Some part of me is sad to see Frost go and mad that the university seemed incapable of making a simple decision which would have saved them over half a million dollars. However, I am also looking forward to upcoming football seasons that (hopefully) restore the glory in our grit. On that note, Go Big Red!