RALEIGH, NC — Scott Frost was fired as Nebraska’s coach on Sunday, less than 24 hours after his Cornhuskers were beaten by Georgia Southern.

Considering Frost’s 16-31 overall record, with 22 of those losses coming in 1-possession games, the only real surprise surrounding his dismissal is that it didn’t come immediately after his inexplicable on-side kick decision against Northwestern 2 weeks ago in Ireland.

So what does this have to do with the ACC in general and NC State in particular?

Because it only took a few minutes after Frost walked out the door in Lincoln for the ripple effect to start being felt in Raleigh. Among the names appearing at or near the top of virtually everybody’s too-early list of potential permanent replacements is the Wolfpack’s Dave Doeren.

It would make a lot of sense, even though his hiring wouldn’t produce much of a splash.

When it comes to stage presence and quotability, Doeren falls somewhere between dry toast and a tax accountant on the charisma scale. But if you listen to Nebraska athletic director Trev Alberts, that’s exactly what his program needs right now.

Apparently, it’s time to start winning games instead of press conferences.

“We’ll stop talking about championships or stop talking about things we used to do,” he said Sunday, echoing an attitude embraced at Miami by its new coach Mario Cristobal. “We’ll just get really process-oriented, detail-oriented and ultimately, when you start doing those fundamental championship habit-type things, those types of wins follow.”

Process-oriented. Detail-oriented. Winning.

Doeren checks off all 3 boxes. He’s also a highly successful recruiter and developer of talent whose players swear by him, not swear about him.

Perhaps most important, he’s a Midwestern guy through and through, having grown up in Kansas, spent his college career in Iowa at Drake and served his apprenticeship as an assistant at Kansas and Wisconsin.

Two years into his first head coaching job, he took Northern Illinois to the Orange Bowl before parlaying that success into the job at NC State, where after getting off to a sluggish start, he has amassed 66 wins in 9-plus seasons to rank No. 2 on the school’s all-time list.

This year’s team, which is 2-0 heading into Saturday’s game against Texas Tech, is considered his best yet.

So much for the résumé.

While it’s obvious why Nebraska might be interested in Doeren, the real question – one NC State fans will be asking online and to each other from now until the end of the season – is whether their coach would be interested in the Cornhuskers should they come calling.

Doeren was already asked straight up on Monday, with a predictable answer.

“It’s Week 3 of the season, man. I’m so fired up to coach my team this week,” he said. “It’s not the first time that names have been on lists, so it is what it is.”

Doeren did just sign an extension that will pay him upwards of $5 million per year through 2026 and includes raises for all his assistants. And he has turned down high-profile Power 5 jobs in the past, most notably Tennessee in 2017, when he proclaimed that his “heart is with NC State.”

But as we all know, coaching contracts are little more than insurance policies that guarantee a nice financial safety net if things don’t turn out well.

Frost’s buyout, for example, will pay him $15 million to not coach the Cornhuskers anymore.

As entrenched at NC State as Doeren is, with a stockpile of talent on hand to sustain his program’s current success, there are plenty of reasons he might decide to leave.

First and foremost is the advice his Wolfpack predecessor Tom O’Brien once voiced: That it’s better to change scenery every 7-10 years than risk wearing out your welcome by staying at a job too long.

Get out of Dodge before the posse catches up with you.

And the posse can come in many forms, including a potential raid of the ACC by the Big Ten and SEC that might leave NC State out in the conference realignment cold.

Although that’s less likely to happen now that the College Football Playoff is expanding to 12 teams with automatic bids going to the 6 highest-rated conferences, it’s still a possibility.

So why not move to a school with the security of already being aligned with one of the Big Two leagues?

Yes, the expectations would be higher – realistically or not. But then, the bar has been set so low by Frost, even those 8- and 9-win seasons Doeren has produced with the Wolfpack would be achievements to celebrate.

At least for a while.

Doeren, meanwhile, is well on the way toward raising the bar to new heights at NC State. His current team has a realistic shot at winning the school’s first ACC championship since 1979.

Accomplishing such a goal would increase his stature considerably. But it would increase the pressure he feels to do it again even more. That’s why there’s a better chance of Doeren leaving, the better his current team does.

Especially if a brand-name program from the Midwest like Nebraska comes calling.

It makes sense. Besides, he already owns a lot of red shirts.