There are a lot of head coaches that wouldn’t think twice about taking a job with a traditional juggernaut program in a Power Five conference, especially if that meant leaving a small, up-and-coming team. But that’s not how Scott Frost is wired.
Yes, Frost ultimately made the decision to leave UCF for Nebraska, returning to his home state and a place where he won a national championship. Coaching the Huskers was a gig too hard to pass up for the hometown hero, but that doesn’t mean it was an easy decision.
Monday, an Orlando sports anchor Pat Clarke of WESH-TV wrote about a conversation he had with Frost just a week prior to UCF’s AAC title game against Memphis. And from Clarke’s statements, leaving Orlando was a really tough decision for Frost to make.
Here’s just one excerpt from Clarke’s piece:
He was all-in at UCF. He had become invested in the program and its future. As Marc and I continued listening, forced to lean in closer as Scott’s voice would trail, the coach’s eyes welled with tears when he talked of his players. What he had done – what most of us aren’t aware of – to make the Knights relevant again went far beyond drawing up a play that would free Tre’Quan Smith for that next stuffed animal. There were bad apples in the program he inherited. Marijuana problems. Compliance headaches. After the bad was escorted out, only the good remained. These were Frost’s kids. How would he be able to say goodbye, he wondered aloud. And why say goodbye at all? When Marc suggested that the Nebraska job might come open again – say three years from now after the next Mike Riley fails – Scott insisted that if he stayed at UCF, he would be here for the next ten years.
Clarke also said that Frost enjoyed the anonymity of the UCF job and the fact that he was able to go out into public and be a regular guy.
For Nebraska fans that believe this was a slam dunk decision for Frost and his family, it’s pretty clear that it was not. He was happy to be in Orlando and was proud of what he, his staff and his players accomplished in such a short time.
The one statement that Frost made to Clarke that shows just how conflicted he was about the decision was also mentioned in the article:
“If I stay, I’ll bawl like a baby. If I go, I’ll bawl like a baby.”
To read the full article from Clarke — and it’s definitely worth your time — you can visit WESH-TV’s website here.