The Big LeadThe Big Lead

Nebraska Gave Scott Frost a Contract Extension He Clearly Hasn't Earned

LINCOLN, NE - NOVEMBER 16: Head coach Scott Frost of the Nebraska Cornhuskers walks off the field after the loss against the Wisconsin Badgers at Memorial Stadium on November 16, 2019 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
Scott Frost | Steven Branscombe/Getty Images

Scott Frost just can't seem to break through at Nebraska.

On Saturday, the 44-year-old head coach helped engineer a 14-point comeback against Iowa that ultimately fell short in the waning seconds. As the Hawkeyes kicker Keith Duncan nailed a 49-yard field goal to secure a 27-24 road win, you could almost hear the air going out of the balloons in Lincoln. It was the latest sign that the Cornhuskers haven't taken a step forward in two seasons under their young head coach, and that maybe the school shouldn't have shoveled more money into his pocket a few weeks ago.

Despite starting the 2019 season in the top 25, Nebraska won't be going to a bowl game.

Frost hasn't done much since taking over as the head football coach at Nebraska. The program's on-field product has been downright awful and it doesn't appear to be getting any better. Which makes it even crazier that Nebraska gave the 44-year-old a contract extension two weeks ago.

I get that Nebraska wants stability for its program, but it's not like Frost's deal was up any time soon. When he agreed to become the school's football coach in December of 2017, Frost signed a seven-year, $35 million contract. That carried him through the 2024 season. Then on November 16, Nebraska announced it had given him a two-year extension that will keep him in Lincoln through 2026.

Why?

There is absolutely no earthly reason to sign an under-performing coach to an extension when he's signed up for five more seasons. It was an absolutely absurd decision.

In 2016, Frost took over as the head coach of a UCF program that had gone 0-12 the year before. In his first season, the Knights went 6-7 before shocking the world and going 13-0 in 2017. That 2017 team even beat Auburn in the Peach Bowl and still claims a share of a national title after being left out of the College Football Playoff. Frost won numerous national Coach of the Year awards for his performance that season.

Given that Frost starred as a quarterback at Nebraska, won a share of the national title in 1997 and was born in Lincoln, it made all the sense in the world for the school to hire away from UCF. That was the right move at the time. But the contract extension made absolutely no sense.

During his two seasons since coming back home, Frost has led the Cornhuskers to a 9-15 record. They went 4-8 in his first season and are 5-7 this year. In two seasons they haven't reached a bowl game. Oh, and they're 6-12 in the Big Ten. This year, Nebraska's only wins came against South Alabama (1-10), Northern Illinois (5-7), Illinois (6-5), Maryland (3-8) and Northwestern (2-9). So the Cornhuskers' five wins have come against teams with a combined record of 18-39. They're also 0-6 against ranked teams.

On the recruiting front, Frost hasn't made a huge dent either. Nebraska's 2020 class currently sits at 29th in 247Sports' composite rankings, which puts them seventh in the Big Ten.

Frost is a member of the Nebraska family and the school has a lot invested in his success. And look, the jury is still out on what kind of coach he'll wind up being. He could absolutely things around in Lincoln, but there was zero reason to hand him two more years and $10 million when he hadn't proven anything.