Nebraska's Scott Frost Press Conference 11/18/19
COURTESY OF UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS DEPARTMENT
On playing Maryland as the coach of UCF “Beautiful area. We had a good experience up there. They beat us my first year in Florida and we went up and won the second. Looking forward to being familiar with the place and going back.”
On impressions of Maryland “I think they’re a team that’s on a growth curve similar to us. You see them do a lot of really good things. I think they’re really athletic. Obviously, the results probably haven’t been what they wanted similar to where we are right now. I think it’s two teams that both need a win and I think both teams are probably going to pour a lot into this.”
On scoring 31 points in a game “That goes all the way back to my time running this offense at Oregon. I forget the exact number but in seven years we were something like 61-2 when we scored 31 as an offense. Don’t quote me on that precisely but it was a real high winning percentage when 31 seemed to be the magic number. In certain games, you point the finger at one phase of our team and in other ones it’s another one. We’ve won games 9-6 and 13-10 here so we just got to put it all together as a team. Just right now when it seems we play well in one phase the other two aren’t as good and vice-versa so we’ve got to put a complete one together as a team.”
On sophomore quarterback Adrian Martinez "I thought Adrian looked more like the Adrian we all expected Saturday. I thought he ran with a purpose. Made some really good throws. You’re never going to play a perfect game at any position. It’s just obvious at quarterback to everybody since that’s where the eyes are when there aren’t good plays and he had a few that I think we can still get fixed but that’s a lot closer to the play that we all expect from a player of Adrian’s caliber.”
On junior running back Dedrick Mills “I think Dedrick is continuing to get better and I think he will continue to get better. I think he’s getting more comfortable in our scheme and our system. He had a great game. A lot of his success Saturday was due to some other people too. The offensive line blocked really well and I thought it was our best game. The offensive coaching staff did a good job scheme-wise and getting them in some good situations. We blocked a little better downfield. There were a lot of things that happened that went into that, but obviously, Dedrick had his best game.”
On Dedrick Mills in the second half of the Wisconsin game “He was sore today, he got beat up pretty good with some of his carries. We played him as much as we thought we could. There were a couple plays that we wish there was someone on the field that might have made one more play here or there, but that’s where we are right now. He didn’t get as many carries in the second half. We didn’t have as many plays in the second half. He was getting worn down a little bit, so we wanted to save him. We had to throw a little bit more in the second half, so there were some other things that went into that. As he keeps going, I think he’ll be able to carry more and more of the load.”
On the defensive line “There are bright spots there with the way some of our guys have been playing. Several of them have gotten opportunities to get in and get their feet wet in college football, and I think they did a really good job. Ty Robinson stands out from Saturday. He held his own out there. Garrett Nelson keeps playing better and better. There are guys at different positions who have taken advantage of their chances as well.”
On the kicking team “They had a really good kicker and they had an advantage in that area over us. The kick return was unfortunate. We had too many guys on that play running down and occupying blocks instead of trying to make a play. Our kicker and our safety need to get it finished even if it gets by everyone else. There are things that we need to address. Their kicker is really good. I think he got one kick in the stands, the hang time was really good. I think that we made good decisions when we needed to in order to fair catch it and make sure we got out on the field with decent field position.”
On sophomore placekicker Matt Waldoch “We’re looking at everybody [for kickoffs]. Matt’s got a chance. There’s a couple other guys who have a chance to help us.”
On senior defensive lineman Carlos Davis “Carlos was beat up all week with an ankle. He was less than 100% all week, but he did some practicing and it took me by surprise on game day [that he couldn't play].”
On big plays on defense: “There has been one more play in a lot of games and situations that would have made the difference. It wasn’t defense immediately after that. It was the kick return. And when you get ahead of a team that’s a top 15 team you can’t give them anything cheap and easy and we got all the momentum well into the first quarter and then gave up a kick return. That can’t happen. And then we went up 14-10 with eight or nine minutes left in the second quarter. Had the wrong leverage on a pass route and then missed a couple of tackles and they scored and then we turned it over and they scored again. Really we went toe to toe with them the whole first half and went in two scores down and that’s where the one play here and the one play there can make a difference.”
On the receivers’ progression: “There is timing to pass routes. There is spacing to pass routes. And for a quarterback to trust to throw things before guys come out of the break, they need to be where he is expecting them to be. Some have improved and progressed well. Others we are waiting on to have it click for them.”
On Frost’s extension and other coaches in the Big Ten West: “There are good coaches in this league. Everywhere I have gone there are good coaches. Definitely good coaches in this league. I talked about this is where we wanted to be. This is the program that I care about. I’m going to do everything I can to get it fixed. We are going to get it fixed. One of the other things that we really appreciated about this school and the Big Ten in general there is length to coaching tenures in this league. That is not always the case in a couple other Power Five leagues. Like I said I’m grateful to Ronnie [Green] and Bill [Moos] and the leadership on this campus for having faith in us. This was a fix and we are in the process of getting it fixed and it’s going to happen. Grateful for the people in Nebraska that are as impatient as I am, but they trust us and grateful for the people on campus that trust us as well.”
On recruiting after the announcement of the expansion project: “Guys are excited. The guys we are recruiting for this class right now will get to spend quite a lot of time in a new facility. I think it will help us even more when there is plans and mockups of what it is going to look like done. It will help us even more when we break ground and will help us even more when it is up and usable. We will continue to show guys the facility and resources that they will have. Recruiting is competitive so any advantage we can get we will take advantage of."
On the younger players “That is a moving target and we have done the best we could. There are a few guys, that knowing some of the injuries we have had and some of the places that we haven’t had enough depth that we think maybe we should have tried to just go ahead and play guys. We tried to play them as they were ready to play and as we felt they were prepared to go out and do it. We are going to be glad that we saved the year for some of these guys down the road but, there are a couple spots where we think maybe if we would have played them that we could have gotten a little more help. But we have to do what is best for the team first and the kids second and that is a tight rope that you have to walk sometimes.”
On playing players who arrived in the summer “Well anybody who has sent kids off to college understands that it is not just football they have to deal with. There are other things you have to get used to [like] functioning on your own, being independent, taking care of school, doing your own laundry, and counting on yourself and relying on yourself to make yourself go to bed and not staying up all night when mom used to tell you that. There are a lot of things that go into it. I tell recruits all the time that it is usually how ready they are to be a pro about what they are doing, and their maturity level has as much to do with playing early sometimes as talent. Each kid comes in different and some are ready to go right away and others not right away but, end up being great players. It is just a little bit different for every kid.”
On Austin Allen and leadership roles on the team “We still don’t have leadership where we need it to be. We have some good leaders but not enough and we still have a few pieces that are working against that. That doesn’t help. But we have been really young on offense all year. Some of those guys like Austin Allen and Jack Stoll, Matt Farniok has been a good leader for us all year. Adrian [Martinez]. A lot of those guys are young though. We’ll be in a better place when those guys are senior leaders and in charge of everything and setting the standard for everybody."
On players being followers “Follower is the wrong word, I don’t want followers I want good teammates and we’re taught by guys that come in and help that good teammates set the standard and that means doing their job the best they can, 100% every single day. Leadership usually starts when you’re able to do that, then brings that one person along with you then that spirit grows and you’re able to bring more and more people with you. You don’t need a whole team of leaders, you just need a team of good teammates and several good leaders."
On improving the team leadership “It’s bigger than that, and again I want to focus on Maryland right now, but we need to make sure we clear the path for the kids who want to be leaders, that there’s no obstacles in their way of being leaders and continuing to put them in positions where we can challenge them to take charge.”
On the growth of the O-line “There’s definitely some growth that had to take place there a couple of new guys in the middle, Cam [Jurgens] especially having played the position for the first time, there’s always going to be bumps as you’re trying to learn and grow there both of them have gotten a lot better as the year has gone on. You know we we’re starting out just trying to get the snap to the quarterback at the beginning of the year. There’s still some calls and things that we miss once in a while that’s going to be easy for Cam Jurgens down the road, but those guys have both improved a lot I thought they played their best game Saturday.”
On players getting better sleep “The biggest predictor of performance on the field is sleep, we have people come in and talk to us about sleep and sleep habits all the time, the right way to do things. Really a student-athlete in the middle of the season needs eight or nine hours a night, and that’s hard to get but that can have a lot to do with performance and we try to educate the guys on that at lot, but at the end of the day we can’t tuck them into bed at night and guys have to care enough about their product on the field and their team to make decisions."
On how he can tell if someone is doing the right thing in the area of sleep “It’s scientific around here because of Zach [Duval], Dave [Ellis] and our trainers. We can monitor it some. We don’t try to make it a police-state type deal where you have to be in bed at a certain time. We just want guys to be the best they can. We can monitor it and see how well they are sleeping and how much sleep they are getting. The biggest thing is educating them on how that can affect performance.”
On bowl game eligibility “You guys do plenty of talking about those things for us. We’re talking about Maryland. We are focused on practicing and playing the best we can this week.”
On the value of a win "We just need to win. That’s it. You can’t put any more on it. In some ways, winning is a habit and losing is a habit. I think there’s a few too many guys on our team who are conditioned to not win. We need to flip that and make sure winning is a habit. To do that, you have to get one, and it’s been too many weeks since we’ve gotten one.”
On Maryland's Head Coach Mike Locksley “I know Mike. You run into a lot of people through coaching circles.”
On Mike Locksley's offensive philosophy “He’s a good man and a good coach.”