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Frost: ‘I’d be hurt’ if Nebraska wasn’t interested

Sports Xchange

November 27, 2017 at 4:53 pm.

Oct 21, 2017; Annapolis, MD, USA; UCF Knights head coach Scott Frost looks onto the field during the second quarter against the Navy Midshipmen at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Oct 21, 2017; Annapolis, MD, USA; UCF Knights head coach Scott Frost looks onto the field during the second quarter against the Navy Midshipmen at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Central Florida head coach Scott Frost continues to be hit with questions about Nebraska’s open job as he prepares his undefeated and 15th-ranked team for the American Athletics Conference championship game against No. 20 Memphis on Saturday in Orlando, Fla.

Frost declined to offer any definitive statements Monday about his future as the speculation runs rampant that he will be become the next head football coach at his alma mater.

“I’d be hurt if Nebraska wasn’t interested in me,” Frost said during a news conference to preview UCF’s appearance in the AAC title game. “We’re undefeated and I’m from there. When you win, a lot of people are interested in you. That doesn’t matter. What matters are these players and what they’ve accomplished and they deserve the focus to be on them and not me.”

Sources told ESPN’s Mark Schlabach that the 42-year-old Frost met with Florida officials more than a week ago to discuss the Gators’ vacancy, but he declined to meet again this past weekend. Florida officials were convinced Frost was taking the Nebraska job, so they moved on to Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen, who was named the Gators’ new coach Sunday.

Frost was asked earlier Monday on an AAC teleconference whether he would return to UCF in 2018.

“I’m just not going to talk about it,” Frost said. “All I want to talk about is this football team.

“I can’t tell you how much I care about these players. And that’s been true in my past. It’s going to be true every year that I’m coaching. And our entire staff is that way. These guys are special. They deserve my best. I’ve said that all year. They deserve our coaching staff’s best.”

A win in the conference title game likely would put the Knights in a Jan. 1 bowl game.

UCF officials will be trying to convince Frost to stay but the offer from Nebraska could come in north of $4 million beyond his current $1.7 million annual salary.

“Every year in college football, there’s tough decisions to make,” Frost said. “And those kind of things happen. And when the time’s right, we’ll make them. I know it would be really hard to leave this team because of how much love I have for this group of guys and how much effort they’ve given us.

“So all I’m going to do is go back to my office and watch more film. This shouldn’t be about me. I know the questions are going to come, but these guys have earned the right to have the conversation be about them.”

Nebraska fired head coach Mike Riley on Saturday after he went 19-19 in three seasons. The decision came a day after the Cornhuskers were embarrassed 56-14 by Iowa at home in the team’s regular-season finale to finish 4-8.

Frost played quarterback at Nebraska in 1996 and 1997, winning a share of the national title as a senior.

In his second season at UCF, Frost coached the Knights to an 11-0 record after a 49-42 win Friday over South Florida to lock up a berth in the AAC championship game.

“I’ve been doing my thing,” said Frost, who added he does not address the job speculation with his players. “I’m a loyal guy and I’m loyal to my family and I’m loyal to people that care about me. I’m loyal to this coaching staff, I’m loyal to these kids. I’m loyal to my alma mater, but I’m more loyal the people that I’m going to battle with every day and that’s been at Kansas State and Northern Iowa and Oregon and here and, right now, my loyalties lie with these players.”