Scott Frost labors in the shadows of past Nebraska quarterbacks.
As he struggles to master a complex offense, Frost knows he will
be compared with Tommie Frazier, who left Lincoln last season
after establishing himself as one of the best option
quarterbacks in history. Watching over Frost is another great
Cornhuskers signal-caller from the past, Turner Gill, now the
team's quarterbacks coach.
"There are a lot of expectations," says Frost, a 6'3", 215-pound
junior who transferred from Stanford after the 1994 season.
"People try to compare me to Coach Gill and Tommie Frazier, but
I don't care what they say now. What matters is what they say in
Gill, for one, is already saying very complimentary things about
Frost. "Scott will be more than an adequate replacement for
Tommie," he says. "He has all the tools." By tools, Gill is
referring to Frost's strong arm (he can throw the ball more than
80 yards), speed (he runs the 40 in 4.61 seconds) and
intelligence (he has a 3.69 GPA as a business administration
If Frost is all that Gill says he is, then coach Tom Osborne has
a good chance of winning an unprecedented third consecutive
national title this season. "It would be nice to have a shot at
a third one," says Osborne. "We have a good enough team. But
realistically, just the fact that you have to win 13 ball games
against a tough schedule makes it very difficult."
The Cornhuskers are off to a good start--that is, no players
have been arrested so far. The bad apples from last season's
team, whose numerous run-ins with the law sullied Nebraska's
national title, have exhausted their eligibility, quit school or
gone off to the NFL. "Last season was difficult for everyone,"
says sophomore tailback Ahman Green. "We got ragged on a lot,
and some of it was deserved, but this year we're going to show
what Nebraska players are really like."
Already, the six-foot, 210-pound Green looks as if he could
become one of the finest I-backs ever at Nebraska. He gained
1,086 yards on just 141 attempts (7.7 yards per carry) last
season and is looking to better those numbers this year. Three
of his linemen return, and the other two projected starters saw
considerable playing time last fall, when the Cornhuskers led
the nation in rushing with a 399.8 yards-per-game average.
Frost will be the one giving Green the ball. Frost may never
make the seas part, as Frazier did while running the option, but
he is fast and agile. A football, basketball and track star at
Wood River (Neb.) High, Frost started five games at safety and
two at quarterback while playing at Stanford in 1994. And Frost
has more talented players beside him now. "I feel real
comfortable with the offense," he says. "But I'll tell you what.
I'm going to feel even more comfortable with that defense on my
Osborne might just have his finest defensive team in 24 years as
head coach in Lincoln. Seven starters are back from a unit that
finished fourth nationally in scoring defense, allowing an
average of 13.6 points per game. The front seven includes a trio
of All-Americas--weakside linebacker Terrell Farley and ends
Jared Tomich and Grant Wistrom--and the biggest middle
linebacker in the Big 12 in 6'4", 250-pound senior Jon Hesse. If
the defense can outperform last year's unit, a three-peat is