Nov 6, 2021; Lincoln, Nebraska, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Scott Frost (right) looks onto the field during the second quarter against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Scott Frost will return as Nebraska coach in 2022

Scott Frost will return for his fifth season as Nebraska’s football coach in 2022, ending speculation that he might be fired amid his fourth consecutive losing season.

Athletic director Trev Alberts made the announcement Monday that Frost, 46, will be back with a restructured contract agreed to by the coach.

“In my four months at Nebraska, I have closely observed our football team, and had several productive discussions with Coach Frost,” Alberts said in a statement. “Scott has laid out a clear plan and vision for the future of Nebraska Football and has agreed to a restructured contract.

“I am excited to continue to work together with Scott. We share a love of Nebraska and this football program and want nothing more than Nebraska Football to again compete for championships.”

Frost, a former quarterback at Nebraska who returned to his alma mater after leading UCF to a 13-0 season in 2017, is 15-27 overall and 10-23 in the Big Ten with the Cornhuskers, who are 3-7 overall and 1-6 in the conference this season after a 26-17 loss to fifth-ranked Ohio State on Saturday.

“I appreciate the confidence Trev Alberts has shown in me to continue to lead this program,” Frost said Monday. “I love this state, this football program and am honored and humbled for the opportunity to serve as the head coach at my alma mater.

“Our immediate focus is on the two games ahead against Wisconsin and Iowa, and the opportunity in front of us to build momentum heading into the offseason and 2022. I understand we have not won at a high enough level, but I am confident our football program will continue to take steps forward.”

The Cornhuskers have played four teams in the most recent Top 10 poll closely — Oklahoma, Michigan State, Michigan and Ohio State — but have been beaten by Illinois, Minnesota and Purdue and have an 0-6 record in games decided by one score.

Frost signed a seven-year, $35 million contract when he arrived at Nebraska in December 2017. He was given a two-year extension in 2019 that pushed the contract through 2026.

The extension was announced before Nebraska’s game against Wisconsin on Nov. 16, 2019. Frost was 7-13 entering that game. Starting with a loss to the Badgers that day, Nebraska has gone 8-14 since.

According to the Lincoln Journal Star, buying out Frost and his coaching staff after this season would have cost Nebraska about $24.5 million.

–Field Level Media

Jul 22, 2021; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Scott Frost speaks to the media during Big 10 media days at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Scott Frost under investigation for improper use of analysts

Nebraska head coach Scott Frost is under investigation by the NCAA for improper use of analysts and consultants, The Action Network reported Wednesday.

Frost and new athletics director Trev Alberts acknowledged an investigation Wednesday without going into specifics.

The allegations are that Frost used Jonathan Rutledge, senior special teams analyst, to conduct special teams drills during practices, despite Rutledge not being one of Nebraska’s 10 full-time on-field assistant coaches, per the report. Analysts and consultants may only communicate with Frost and the coaching staff, not players, per NCAA rules.

Nebraska has significant video evidence of Rutledge interacting with players during practice in front of Frost and other assistants, per the report.

“The University of Nebraska Athletic Department has been working collaboratively with the NCAA to review a matter concerning our football program,” Alberts said. “We appreciate the dialogue we have had with the NCAA and cannot comment further on specifics of this matter.”

Rutledge and Frost’s chief of staff Gerrod Lambrecht both left the program in the past eight months. Rutledge was fired Jan. 14, 2021, ostensibly for poor special teams play. Frost announced Lambrecht’s departure earlier this month, saying he was pursuing another opportunity.

The NCAA is also investigating Nebraska for holding unauthorized off-campus organized workouts under the supervision of the Cornhuskers’ strength and conditioning staff last year during the coronavirus pandemic, per the report. Lambrecht is linked to those activities, per the report.

The NCAA has interviewed Frost, assistant coaches, staff and players, and Frost has obtained legal counsel, per the report.

Frost, 46, could be suspended a certain number of games, among other punishment, pending the results of the NCAA’s probe.

A former star quarterback at Nebraska (1996-97), Frost is 12-20 at his alma mater entering his fourth season.

Alberts took over as athletic director last month and said he first learned of the probe after he started.

–Field Level Media

Sep 7, 2019; Boulder, CO, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Scott Frost before the game against the Colorado Buffaloes at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Frost: Nebraska ready to play in or out of Big Ten

If the Big Ten Conference cancels its football season this fall as a precaution because of the coronavirus pandemic, Nebraska apparently will explore playing outside of its league.

ESPN reported Sunday that a majority of Big Ten presidents are in favor postponing the upcoming fall sports seasons. Nebraska’s president evidently was not one of them … at least not when it comes to football.

“I know where our university president stands, and he wants to play,” Nebraska head football coach Scott Frost said Monday.

Ohio State head coach Ryan Day suggested on Twitter that he wants his team to play as well, writing: “Swinging as hard as we possibly can right now for these players!! This isn’t over! #FIGHT”

Day added, according to ESPN, “We cannot cancel the season right now. We have to at the least postpone it and give us some time to keep reevaluating everything that is going on. … Let’s do everything we can. We owe it to these kids to exhaust every possible option and go from there.”

Penn State head coach James Franklin expressed a similar sentiment, tweeting, “I love our players & believe it is my responsibility to help them chase their dreams, both collectively & individually. I am willing to fight WITH them & for our program!”

Frost said during a video conference call with reporters, “We’re a proud member of the Big Ten. We want to play a Big Ten schedule.

“I think the only reason we would look at any other options is if for some reason the Big Ten wasn’t playing and only a handful of teams from the Big Ten wanted to continue playing. I think if that’s the case, I think we’re prepared to look at any and all options.”

Nebraska is estimating that it would lose between $80 million and $120 million if there is no season, although even if the Cornhuskers do play, there is no indication how many paying fans would be admitted into stadiums, if they are allowed to attend at all.

“If we send kids home, they’re going to be in closer contact with a lot of family members and other people that might be at higher risk for coronavirus than if we keep them here in an environment where they’re around other healthy, young people,” Frost said. “If I had a son, I would want him playing football. I think this is the safest place he could be, and a lot of schools around the conference probably feel the same way.”

–Field Level Media