In order to save the empire, bring peace to the kingdom, restore the order, extend the sellout streak, satisfy the long-suffering and, perhaps, increase business at Wendy’s, we must win over Scott Frost.
We know this, even if we aren’t seeing frost warnings that feature footballs on the local TV weather report.
Or traveling to Philadelphia to hold up red-lettered signs in a football stadium asking Central Florida’s head coach to please come home, like worried parents of a runaway.
Or spreading rumors about Frost sightings or writing pleading letters to the editor or raising our hands when NU Athletic Director Bill Moos called us the Fractured and the Fragile.
Scott Bossung is Exhibit No. 1 in that falling-apart fan base. A 42-year-old father of two who went to college with the other Scott, playing the saxophone in the marching band while the Wood River native ran the offense for the football team.
The season ticket-holder — who began wearing blue to home games after Shawn Eichorst got the boot — doesn’t particularly have an opinion one way or the other on whether his old classmate is our new coach.
“The only reason I care is because if he doesn’t come, it’s going to be an absolute dumpster fire,” Bossung said. “Can you imagine? What are we going to do?”
Bossung and his fellow fragile fans have lived in the Land of Dashed Hopes for nearly two decades now.
Now many of its Cornheaded citizens have a plea: Head back to the Heartland, Wayward Son.
“He has the ability to galvanize everybody,” says Josh Gardner, 48, a Husker convert born in Alabama. “Frost is a tie to when we were good.”
Gardner went to high school with Tom Osborne’s daughter. He remembers being in their living room after a loss at Oklahoma and the ugly phone calls from fans that followed.
He sold Coca-Cola at Memorial Stadium before the powers-that-be forbid it and switched to Pepsi. He was there for the walk-ons and the win streaks and the power of “In the Deed the Glory.”
He calls Frank Solich’s firing divisive. Bill Callahan’s insults unforgivable and Bo Pelini’s reign “cancerous.”
Scott Frost? “I think people are excited to have a coach of such an impeccable resume and pedigree, someone we can get behind in the long and arduous process of coming back to prominence.”
Someone who will get more time to put the shine back on our Adidas.
On Thursday morning, the grown-up voice of past gridiron glory — a shared No. 1 national championship in 1997 — was transmitted by a radio station in Orlando, Florida. "There’s only a couple of places in the whole country that I would even think about coaching. Decisions come up and we’re going to have to make some hard decisions and I can tell you that it’s not easy."
The words were duly reported and appropriately parsed, adding to an already deafening clamor for Frost’s return.
Husker fan Tim Schaffert hears the drumbeat from his home in Florida when he clicks on the stories of sportswriters and bloggers back home.
“They’re acting like it’s a done deal,” the 61-year-old UNL grad said. “I read all that stuff and I start thinking, ‘He is the guy. This is going to work.”
He hopes he’s not wrong. Again.
“We’ve struck out so many times, it’s hard not to be a little cynical, but I think he has this will to win.”
Schaffert has a daughter in college in Florida, 70 miles from his home in Clearwater. He’s been to a Frost-coached game.
“There was no defense, so that looks the same as what I’m used to,” he said, laughing. “I just hope he has a defensive coordinator who’s halfway decent.”
The fan from Florida is realistic, too. “I’m exasperated. I think he’s better than the last choice, but I’m going to wait and see what happens.”
Up in Omaha, lifelong fan Janine Erickson, who has worked her way through hundreds of posts on HuskerExtra.com, is rooting for Frost, although she'd settle for Virginia Tech's Justin Fuente.
Either way, she's happy the program is moving on. "Before I had little hope, and now I have hope. A lot more."
And the wait to know who will be the third head coach on the current Husker payroll will soon be over.
Frost’s team plays Memphis for the American Athletic Conference title Saturday and prognosticators expect him to announce his decision — SCOTT, PHONE HOME — shortly after.
For Bossung, it’s hard to get the rah-rah feeling back, even if it’s for an 11-0 vaunted native son, the designated heir to the kingdom, such as it is.
“Right now," the beleaguered fan said, "I feel like a jilted lover who's been cheated on a couple of different times.”