Nebraska coach Scott Frost promised “everything we’ve got” would be poured into Saturday’s game at Minnesota, unfortunately for the Huskers, the same old story unfolded during a 30-23 loss to the Golden Gophers. For a team that appears so close to a breakthrough, late-game misfortune continues to haunt Nebraska after Minnesota went on a five-play, 72-yard touchdown drive to ice it after the Huskers gave up a safety with 4:45 to play trailing by five.
The loss was Nebraska’s fourth this season away from home.
“Yeah, we got to try to win one on the road. We’ve had a lot of away games,” Frost said before his team’s latest mishap. “Haven’t been here much. Look forward to being here more with the fans that we have and the environment we have right now. The guys are used to being on the road and we’ve played some good teams on the road. It’s another one, another big challenge.”
For Frost, positive momentum is needed during a season continuing to head in the wrong direction.
Here’s some of the reaction following Frost’s latest close loss with the Huskers:
No punches pulled here in response to Frost, who dropped to 15-25 with the Huskers including his fourth setback in the last five games this season. All five losses this season have come by eight points or less, especially disappointing for a veteran-laden group that has found a variety of ways to lose games.
This record is not going to cut in in the ultra-competitive Big Ten, where a team’s spot in the league standings can go from top-tier to bottom when the losses mount. Quarterback play has been spotty at best in those 25 close games with the Huskers, but starting games cold is another issue that Nebraska cannot seem to shake during the stretch.
Frost received public backing this week from Huskers athletic director Trev Alberts, who believes Nebraska has the right man for the job. Saturday was a winnable game for the Huskers, that got away late after Nebraska had moved within a few points of the Gophers.
“Cultural things don’t get flipped overnight, that’s the hard thing,” Alberts said, via ESPN. “There’s got to be a consistency in approach not just from the head football coach. It’s got to start right here. I’m accountable to it, too. A place like this, if you’re not careful, you can get comfortable and lethargic and entitled. That’s not what this place was built on.”
Steve Sarkisian is not going anywhere after his first season with the Longhorns, but Saturday’s home loss coming after the epic collapse against Oklahoma will create more noise within the fanbase. Frost’s situation is considerably different — this is Year 4 and the Huskers have yet to post a winning record under his watch.
The Huskers trailed 21-9 at halftime after punting on three of five possessions over the first two quarters. Nebraska was forced to play from behind the rest of the way, increasing the pressure a bit on Adrian Martinez and the offense.
“The last couple years they’ve really packed the box and made it really tough on us to run it,” Frost said before the game, speaking highly of Minnesota’s plan defensively. “So we’ve got to do a good job coming off the ball and creating things, and trying to get things on their secondary.”