LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska coach Scott Frost officially kicked off spring football practice early Friday morning. While practice was scheduled for 6 a.m., Frost noted that most players were at the Hawks Championship Center at 4 or 4:30 a.m.
— Ryan Callaghan (@Callaghan_NEB) March 16, 2018
Friday marked the first official spring practice, but Frost and his staff met with players all week. Under NCAA rules, the one practice allowed Nebraska to meet with position groups and have meetings all week. The week paid off, too, as Frost said his first practice with Nebraska went better than his first practice with Central Florida did two years ago.
“Good Day 1,” Frost said post-practice. “[I’m] really impressed with the effort and enthusiasm out here. The guys took to the style of practice we’re going to have really well. A lot of details still need to get fixed, but that was really good effort and intentions.”
The Huskers are now off for a week because of spring break, but it was important to Frost that the players understand the expectations of practice prior to break.
“Hopefully that’ll discourage a little extracurricular [activities] over spring break if they know they have to come back and work like this,” Frost said.
Frost was clear that he doesn’t a lot of specific rules when it comes to the players. For him, it’s simple: do the right thing.
Part of doing the right thing is allowing the players to make their own decisions over spring break. He said he hopes they’ll all come back from 100 percent ready for practice, having made good decisions.
And for the players who maybe aren’t yet early risers, they’re going to have to learn to be quickly. Frost and his staff still have to work out the schedule, but he said they’d like to continue morning practices into the fall. The early morning practices allow the team more time to recover, which Frost said is a benefit to keeping them the players fresh for each game come fall.
“I didn’t ask the players their opinion when we moved to morning practices, but I’m a believer in it,” Frost said. “This is earlier than I want to go, but the schedule right now dictates that. Listen, our kids will be better football players, better students and better citizens on campus when we get our work done in the morning.
“That’s what we’re trying to get done, and the guys responded well to it.”
In Frost’s case, he’s been in the players’ shoes before. He remembers mornings in college where it was a decision between getting up for class or staying in bed. He admits to occasionally making the wrong decision. He said he hopes the early morning practices will help curb that with his players.
“None of these players will miss practice, so we’re going to get them up and get them moving,” Frost said. “We’ll have better attendance in classes. We’ll have better attentiveness in classes, and these guys are going to flourish better on and off the field because of it.”
— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) March 16, 2018