Nebraska's Frost: Sky not falling, despite record

by Ricardo Gutierrez - Though Scott Frost has yet to produce a winning season since taking over his alma mater, the Nebraska coach says the sky is not falling and that the team has been doing things the right way, despite limited on-field success.

Nebraska football coach Scott Frost staying the course despite lack of success so far play Big Ten commish: Future expansion would be for right reasons at right time (0:56) Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren talks about the conference's plans for expansion after adding UCLA and USC. (0:56) 1:34 PM ET Chris LowESPN Senior Writer Close College football reporter Joined ESPN.com in 2007 Graduate of the University of Tennessee INDIANAPOLIS -- Scott Frost, looking for his first winning season at Nebraska as he enters his fifth year as coach, told ESPN on Tuesday at Big Ten media days that it's not a "sky-is-falling" situation despite the Huskers' lack of success on the field. "It may look like it, but it's not," Frost said. Frost is just 10-25 against Big Ten opponents since returning to his alma mater. The Huskers were 3-9 a year ago with eight of those nine losses coming by eight or fewer points. "It's taken longer than any of us wish it would have," Frost said. "I think we had a good enough team to turn the corner last year and it didn't happen. I think we are arguably more talented this year. We're going to have a new quarterback, and that's probably the biggest thing. The quarterback's play is probably the biggest factor in what's going to happen this year. "But the feeling around Nebraska doesn't change. Every year, it's optimism and support." Editor's Picks Warren: Big Ten may expand beyond USC, UCLA 49m Adam Rittenberg Wisconsin? Purdue? Iowa? Minnesota? The Big Ten West is up for grabs 20d Bill Connelly 2 Related Quarterback Casey Thompson , a transfer from Texas , is one of several transfers Frost brought into the program. Frost said Thompson would start preseason practice taking first-team reps. In addition, Frost brought in Mark Whipple from Pittsburgh to be the Huskers' new offensive coordinator, and Whipple will call plays in 2022. Whipple is part of an overhaul of Nebraska's offensive staff, but Frost said that doesn't mean he's overhauling his approach. "When you feel like you're doing the right things, a complete change of course is the wrong way to go," Frost said. "There's always little things that we might tweak or ways for us to look to get a little bit better. My role's going to change a little bit, having an offensive coordinator that I trust to take it over a little bit. But for the most part, we've been doing it the right way. It just hasn't led to the results we want yet. "This year's going to be different." Frost said this is the best leadership the Huskers have had since he's been coach and that having some new faces and new coaches on the team has helped bring a "new energy to the group," and he added that this team has a "chip on its shoulder." "We had a good team last year and we just were missing the edge to finish games," Frost said. "We had some bad breaks, made some bad plays. We had a better team than what our record was, and it falls on me and the team to fix that. But I think the guys are hungry right now." Nebraska junior outside linebacker Garrett Nelson said nobody in the program is naive to the narrative out there that this is a win-or-else season for Frost and the Huskers. "Call a spade a spade," Nelson told ESPN. "It's obviously a huge season for us as a team and also for the coaching staff. We know what's on the line. We don't need to make it obvious because everybody can feel it. When it's tangible like that, it's pretty obvious. There's no chaos or anybody freaking out. The sense of urgency has picked up, but once you start panicking, that's when you start playing bad and start turning on teammates. That's not who we are." Nelson added, "As a team that's been together for a while, we've been through a lot of things and heard the things said about our coaches and teammates and how we've played football. We're ready to silence that." Even though he won't be calling plays, Frost said he would stay heavily involved with the offense. "It will be about the same as it was before," Frost said. "It's just that I don't have to run every offensive unit meeting and I don't have to do all the game planning. I can spend some time with the defense for a few days if I need to." Last week, Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi fired a shot in Whipple's direction and said Whipple was "stubborn" and had no desire to run the ball and that "everybody knew it." Asked about Narduzzi's criticism, Frost quipped, "(Pitt) had one of the top offenses in the country, so if we score as many points as they scored last year, I don't care if we run it, throw it or kick it." Frost also downplayed the chatter about his job security and how that would affect him going into this season, which opens for Nebraska on Aug. 27 against Northwestern in Dublin, Ireland. "There's not a coach in the world that hasn't had people down on him at some point," Frost said. "We've struggled, but we've been doing it right. And you know, it wasn't really a rebuild here, but more of a tear-down. There have been a lot of curve balls thrown at us along the way. ... But like I said, I'm sticking to my guns. We're going to do things the right way, and sooner or later, the breaks will go our way."