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They Said It: Scott Frost Discusses Huskers’ Win Over Michigan State

November 17, 2018

Nebraska coach Scott Frost met with the media Saturday afternoon following the Huskers' 9-6 win over Michigan State. Frost addressed playing through tough conditions, freshman kicker Barret Pickering and sending the seniors out the right way. 

Check out the full transcript from Frost's time at the podium.

On happiness on today’s win:

“Good teams figure out how to win any kind of game, and that’s a different kind of game that I have been apart of as a coach, winning a game with no touchdowns. I am so happy for the seniors, so happy for the Blackshirts. Some of these games we’ve won, we’ve been winning on offense, and it was great to see the defense step up today.”

On difficulties with wind and injuries:

“Basically, it was one play away. That was not a good day for offensive football. That hurt both offenses. They’re really good on defense. We had a lot of stuff, kind of, game planned for them. We couldn’t run a bunch of it, especially in two of the quarters when you’re going into the wind. They’re really good against the run. It’s hard to sustain drives against them. But, we knew going into halftime, with the score what it was, it was one play somewhere to get us down there. I thought it would be a touchdown, ended up being a three field goals. Give a ton of credit to them. They have a disciplined, well-coached team that plays their butts off. They’ve been bit by the injury bug and certainly aren't as complete of a team as they could’ve been. That’s November football. We have a couple hurt too, but I give a lot of credit to Coach (Mark) Dantonio’s staff.”

On team’s grit and grind:

“Every week I have been coaching them, I think there is a little more fight. Today was certainly the most I’ve seen. I haven’t seen these guys quit. I’ve seen them keep practicing better and better. I’ve seen them keep playing harder. I’ve seen them come together better as a team. That’s a hard game to win. It would’ve been even harder to lose. Our guys had to stick with it. Offensively, we had to keep grinding and the defense had to keep coming up with stops. They found a way to get it done.”

On Barret Pickering and Isaac Armstrong:

“Two of the unsung heroes, I don’t know if it’s unsung with Barret (Pickering), but two of the heroes today were Barret Pickering and Isaac Armstrong. Some of the punts that he hit into the wind made a difference in field position. It was a field-position game. Barret hitting the two field goals, I had enough confidence in him at that point to let him go out and try a long one, and he buried it. It turned out to be the difference. So, you could pick about a dozen guys on our team that have gotten just infinitely better as the year has gone along, and those guys are kind of representative of our whole team.”

On toughness:

“Toughness is mentality I think. It’s also easy to be tough when you care more. I think both of those things have gotten better.”

On Antonio Reed:

“Antonio (Reed) is another one. He was kind of up and down at the beginning of the year. He is certainly one of the most talented guys we have on defense. But, talent doesn’t matter if you’re not doing everything the right way, not in the right place. Antonio is that guy now, and it showed today. He was certainly the hero of our defense today. I couldn't be happier for him on senior day, last game at Memorial Stadium. That’s a great way to go out. So, my hat’s off to Antonio.”

On realizing when wind became a factor:

“Probably warm ups. I laid in bed last night with my fingers crossed and hands folded in prayer, hoping that we’d be able to throw it. Going into the game, I think they were giving up 270 a game in the passing game, or something, 70 yards rushing. I knew it would make it harder on us if we weren’t able to throw. We tried to come out in the first drive and just run our offense. It was pretty obvious after that, that we had to flip the script on our game plan. Again, a lot of credit to them. That’s as good of a run defense as we’re going to play, and on a day when it’s tough for offenses, that’s not a team you want to play.”

On the team’s improvement:

“I told the guys in the locker room if from a coaching standpoint, or pretty much on everything, I guess, the team could’ve started the season where it is right now, that would’ve been a funny act. Some of the growing things we had to go through were necessary, and I’m crushed for the seniors we couldn’t get that done quicker. This team has been through so much and to be where it is right now and have the second half of the season it’s been having, it makes it really special. And I think the seniors will probably look back on this and think it was a pretty special season after all.”

On what he did with the game ball:

“I didn’t ask for the ball, somebody came up and handed it to me. But I probably won’t give it back to equipment.”

On senior running back Devine Ozigbo:

“Devine has been that guy for us since the Purdue game that we can hand the ball to, and he’ll get tough yards, he’s going to make plays… we needed one first down. And we were in that situation a couple of other times particularly at the Northwestern game, we didn’t get a first down, and we had to punt and lost the game. The offensive line did a great job blowing a couple of holes open and he got it. I thought (freshman running back) Mo (Washington) ran hard today, made a couple of big plays for us. The guys are just playing with more courage, more toughness, more passion and that’s a lot of fun to coach.”

On the seniors:

“Seniors stepped up big today. Antonio (Reed), Tre (Neal), Jerald (Foster) and Tanner (Farmer) on the offensive line, Stanley (Morgan Jr.) broke a record today. Awesome to see, he deserves everything he gets. Just a bunch of guys, Devine (Ozigbo) going over 1,000 yards (on the season), some of these seniors are the guys that are carrying this. I couldn’t be more happier for them and the success we’re having at the end.”

On Michigan State’s playing style:

“I kind of thought going into the game it’d be a throw-to-run game, not a run-to-throw game, just because of their style. We just kind of had to keep grinding, and particularly in the first and third quarters, when we were against the wind, we just kind of had to bide our time and try to get where we could open up a little bit. When the fourth quarter hit, we took a few chances and tried to throw a few shots on them, hit a couple and that led to some points. Again, I’ve got a ton of respect for them. They’re not who they want to be on offense right now because they’ve had so many injuries. It’d have probably been a different game if everyone was on the field, it would’ve helped them… certainly would’ve helped us and some other guys. But that’s a really good team and a well-coached team.”

On a tough sequence in the fourth quarter and kicking the ball against the wind at half:

“Yeah, definitely. Those are decisions you have to make, and I thought it’d be a close enough game that we’d want to win in the fourth quarter. I knew we had to survive the third (quarter), and then (freshman kicker) Barrett (Pickering) came out and kicked it to the end zone into the wind. That was a big way to start the half. So, sometimes those same decisions work out, sometimes they don’t work out.”

On the pre-game ceremony and former Husker Sam Foltz:

“The pre-game ceremony was touching. I didn’t know Sam, I know his family well now. I was actually in Western Nebraska with a couple of friends  when the news came over on the radio, so I was back in Nebraska when I heard. Boy, everything you hear about Sam is not just how good of a player he was, but how good of a person he was. Coach Mark Dantonio said the same thing about the other young man (Mike Sadler). Lives that end too soon, it’s a tragedy. So, we’re sorry to see that happen, but it was pretty special what they did for him on the field today.”

On JD Spielman:

“We knew coming in this morning that he wasn’t ready.”

On keeping emotions under control on Senior Day:

“I don’t think that’s one of our problems other than being smart when you get angry on the field, so we don’t get any dumb penalties. But, aside from that, I think we just play with more emotion. Having the inspiration of playing for some of these guys added to our emotion today and our energy, and that might’ve been the difference.” 

On Noah Vedral:

“He’s just got a little strain, but it’ll be alright.”

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