HuskersOnline: Frost receives hometown welcome in Wood River

WOOD RIVER, Neb. – The native son of Wood River finally came home on Tuesday.

For the first time since becoming Nebraska’s head football coach, Scott Frost made his first public appearance in his home town in front of over 500 people in Babel’s Barn in Wood River.

“It’s crazy everywhere I go I’m the head coach of Nebraska, but I feel like when I come back around here, I’m just Scott,” Frost said as the crowd applauded.

The event was a fundraiser for the Stick Creek Kids Child Development Center, which is in the process of being built in Wood River. They have raised nearly $1.3 million of the $2 million they need to build a state-of-the-art childcare and preschool facility to help attract more families to Wood River.

Frost was accompanied at the dinner by both his parents and former Wood River football coaches Larry and Carol Frost.

Scott Frost reiterated to the crowd how great it was to be back home in Nebraska after living in so many different places the last several years.

“I’ve lived in 13 different states now chasing this crazy game around,” Frost said. “Sometimes that gives you perspective that the grass isn’t always greener somewhere else. I’ve lived in California and didn’t like that. I’ve lived in Wyoming, Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin, New York, Kansas, Iowa and Oregon. After you go through that sometimes you realize that maybe the people that stayed home were the smart ones.”

As for on the field, Frost knows his team has their work cut out for them, but things are well on their way after a successful spring.

“We are working our ass off to make you guys proud,” Frost said. “Just being honest with you, when we got to Lincoln there was a lot to fix. To put it nicely, it was more broken than any of us even expected. When we walked in the door there was a lot of things to fix internally and there was a lot of things to fix with the team.

“We needed better talent, we needed better attitudes and we needed to get bigger, faster and stronger than we were. Year ones are tough. Year one at (UCF) was tough. We lost every close game we played. We were discouraged. We wanted to win more than we did. We made a real big turnaround in year two. Down there we kind of expected it would be year three when the big turnaround would happen, and everything just kind of came together and it happened in year two.

“I can tell you we are probably further ahead at this point in the progression than we were in Florida. Not saying we are going to have that kind of season like we had in year two of Florida, but I can promise you things are coming, and we are moving in a really good direction.”

Odds and ends 

***Frost told the crowd becoming father has been the best thing in his life.

“Listen I’m an old dad,” Frost said. “I waited a long time to get started, but it’s the greatest thing I’ve done in my life.”

***Frost also spoke at Riverside Golf Club in Grand Island at their Chamber Luncheon Tuesday.

***A painted portrait of Frost went for $1200 in a live auction. Two tickets to the Indiana game, complete with sideline and corporate tailgate passes, went for $2400.