The biggest news Nebraska had this off season was the hiring of Scott Frost. Frost previously coached a winless UCF team to undefeated in 2 years. Frost played at Nebraska from 1995 to 1997 and his homecoming to the Huskers brought excitement and pride back to the Big Red. This season will be a big change for Nebraska as Frost starts his overhaul of the program.
Not only did Scott Frost poach every coach from undefeated UCF, he brought in many recruits. Frost took the program, which was 89th in the nation and last in the Big 10 in recruiting, to 22nd in the nation and 5th in the Big 10. Frost is a recruiting savant that brought in 21 new croots including 4 star QB Adrian Martinez, who could get the start at Quarterback this year.
Nebraska has 3 options at QB, none of whom have had any playing time in Lincoln, and 2 of whom are Freshman. The developing QBs will have ample time with 6 offensive lineman returning. Martinez is a true freshman and Tristian Gebbia is a redshirt freshman and both are 4-star QB’s that bring something to the table. Martinez is quick on his feet,and Gebbia has the arm to be a good Big 10 QB. Both will need time to break in, but in Year 0 of Frost’s rebuild, either option is a good starting point.
Stanley Morgan Jr. and JD Spielman return as the top receivers for the Cornhuskers and Frost added 2 JUCO transfers, Jaron Woodyard and Mike Williams. One place where Nebraska needs to improve on is rushing. No running back had more than 500 yards and Nebraksa only averaged 107 yards a game. The Huskers added 4/5-star backs Greg Bell III and Maurice Washington but both are largely unproven on the college field. It is pretty easy to see that Nebraska will look to be a pass first team as it develops its young RB core.
Last year, Nebraska was not the best team defensively, ranking dead last in Total Defense, Turnover Margin, Sacks, Tackles for Loss and Passes defended in the Big 10. The Blackshirts ranked 110th in the nation last year and was the least disruptive defense in the nation. It is clear the Frost will look to change this in the coming year. He started by bringing on Erik Chinander from UCF. With every lineman, 6/7 LBs and 6/8 DBs returning in 2018, which allows for experienced players to prop up the defense and Chinander molds it to his liking.
Nebraska has a rough schedule, but the Huskers will be competitive. The biggest game early in the season will be against Colorado in Week 2. The Big 10 schedule is daunting with games against Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State, but Frost’s Huskers should be competitive, if the defense is improved from last year. If the Huskers go 6-6 or 7-5 and make a bowl, Frost’s first year will be a success.