Since the day Scott Frost was hired as Nebraska’s head football coach, he and his staff have been on a whiplash schedule.
They first had to get from the American Athletic Conference title game to Lincoln for the official introduction. Then a frantic pair of weeks on the road recruiting. Then preparing Central Florida for the Peach Bowl. Now the transition to full-time work here and, beginning Thursday, more weeks recruiting before National Signing Day on Feb. 7.
Interspersed between all of it there have been award ceremonies, recruiting weekends in Lincoln, actual moves to Nebraska, team meetings and the beginning of spring semester, this week’s coaches’ convention and more.
Given all of the moving parts, athletic director Bill Moos says he’s been impressed.
“It’s taken a great deal of organization and extra energy, and I was very impressed,” he told the Journal Star on Wednesday. “It’s good to have them (in Lincoln) full-time, but I wouldn’t have traded that experience for Scott and his staff and also the tremendous exposure that Nebraska got during that Peach Bowl. It was incredible.”
Last month, Moos said the athletic department would begin exploring the prospect of increasing the number of walk-on spots in the football program. Given the breakneck pace the staff is on, those discussions will be coming after National Signing Day.
“We’re putting our efforts into really doing everything we can in the next four weeks to secure a really, really good recruiting class,” Moos said. “Then we’re going to sit down and really talk long-term. To shake things up too much right now is not going to be a good way to proceed in the short term.
“We’re going to get through these next few weeks and then we’re going to sit down on a lot of things. The walk-on program will be one of them.”
With the football staff on the road recruiting for most of the next month, Moos will turn some of his attention elsewhere. He saw the men’s basketball team play in person for the first time Tuesday night, a 63-59 win over Wisconsin at Pinnacle Bank Arena that moved NU to 12-6 overall and 3-2 in Big Ten play.
“I liked our energy, I think we’ve got some real good talent, I thought the game was coached well,” Moos said. “I know we all would like to have less turnovers, but when you start to get a winner’s mentality and you can make mistakes and still come out with a victory, that’s saying a lot.
“It was the first time I’ve seen PBA for a basketball game and I was extremely impressed. Well-staged event, great fans, super support. So I look at our record, look at the conference and, just taking a first brush at it, I feel like we’re in a fairly good place. I’m eager to get some time with (head coach) Tim (Miles) and talk to him about what his thoughts are.”
Moos on playoff expansion: Frost said Sunday that he would be in favor of an eight-team playoff instead of four after his Central Florida team went undefeated but didn’t come close to making the field.
Moos said the idea intrigues him, but he’s not fully sold on expansion.
“Before I would become an advocate for an eight-team playoff, I’d have to see and hopefully be involved in some way in how that would play out,” he said. “Where are you going to play those early games? Are they going to be on campus? Part of another bowl game? Those types of things that I really think, when we went to the four-team playoff system, was well thought-out and I applauded it. I certainly see the case being made in regards to leaving people out of the picture and I think we need to continue to address it and continue to look at different formats that can be perhaps even more fair.
“I’d be very eager to explore it and hopefully we do at some point.”
That’s not to downplay the success of the playoff, though, as Moos said he’s been happy with the change to that system from the old BCS.
“We had to get into this and see how it played out,” he added. “Yes, there are some flaws, but I’ve got to tell you, having the people on that committee that are knowledgeable about college football and addressing and taking into consideration strength of schedule, a lot of these things are for the better. Is it perfect? No. Can it be tweaked? It has been through the years. Can it be better? Very possibly.”