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What's wrong with this team? or... What's hindering this team???

berryhusker

Travel Squad
15 Year Member
I was going to post this response to the thread about Herman Edwards vs Scott Frost at this point in their career at their positions. It ended up being very long and I thought it would be best to be scrutinized as it's own thread.

I will preface this post by saying these are simply my thoughts as someone who has not played football past the pee wee and middle school years, so my knowledge of the game is purely from observation. This is definitely not and X's and O's type of post but more of a psychological/sociological hypothesis simply based on observations and speculations.

I am very open to scrutiny, criticism, and skepticism. I just want to get other's thoughts about a simple concept that might be more complex than I/we have considered. These are just my recent thoughts after freezing my arse off in a nearly half empty stadium in freekin Minnesota!

This idea could easily be off, and my lovely partner could give you pages of examples of when I've been wrong before, but I feel that the pressure since Frost's hire has impacted the team's performance. Back to the Herm vs Frost post, there is far more pressure here at NU than ASU, and it isn't even remotely comparable. I have a very strong intuition the coaches and players have experienced this pressure ever since Frost was first hired and they are still working to manage it.

Most of us (myself included) knew that at the time of his hire Frost was our program's savior. The timing synched with Swiss precision as a coaching position came available during a time when invigorated and competent leadership had been restored. Frost's success had proven his acumen as a D1 head coach, with field accomplishments and warranted accolades. Along with him knowing the Nebraska culture and expectations, talk about a perfect match! And 99% of us (my estimation) believed that. I still do...

Frost was hired as the epitome of the Golden Child; progeny of home-grown athletic greatness, a true Nebraska prodigy, gilded in the forge of experience and wisdom exalted from the esteemed sage and Saint of Nebraska football. The intersection of education, preparation, and hubris was complete. Sir Frost was sent on his quest to awaken the great giant of football hegemony.

This may seem to be hyperbole to many, but I honestly feel this description encapsulates how many of us viewed Frost's return, and it may emphasize the type of pressure players are experiencing. This isn't simply an internal/external pressure, it is existential.

Transitioning into metaphor, I believe Huskerdom can at times be an extremely precise and sophisticated pressure cooker, where the compression (obsession) can enhance some ingredients while causing others to compress and deteriorate. I honestly believe the coaching staff is aware of this dynamic and is doing their best to temper the extreme external pressure with their approach, especially with their "no mistakes, just go fast and hard" mentality. As we all know, some foods are much more delicious and complete our anticipation/expectation when properly cooked under pressure... others simply fall short.

Back to this team... we saw them react and rise to the external demand during the first half of a highly anticipated and pressure-driven game against CU, a former conference foe (rival), with the added motivation of vindication for an extremely dirty play endured their leader who was victimized the previous year. This team rose to appreciate and possibly exalt that pressure to a point where they dominated the first half. To me the letdown performance of the second half depicted the exact pressure I feel is difficult for this team to manage. Beginning to fault in front of fans who sacrificed greatly to observe (judge) them could have added to the pressure they have earlier internalized, and contributed to a continuation of poor performance. I wonder if that CU game performance has had an overall lingering effect.

I really believe this team will excel once they start to focus on processes, both team and individual, and less on outcomes or expectations. If players focus on their enjoyment of the game in the present, appreciate what drew them to the game, while maintaining their personal and team goals, maybe the outcomes will fall into place. I realize that may be overly simplistic/reductionistic, but I'd entertain any discussion this long, drawn out theory could provoke :) Let's just keep focus on NE football for this discussion, as much as some have noticed I have fallen short myself. Apologies and forgiveness.
 
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HUSKER HOT SAUCE

Music Soothes My Soul
5 Year Member
From what I can tell, your post is to long and I didn't bother reading 80% of it.

Also, we don't quite have the athletes to run Frosts' Offense properly, the same way TO didn't always have the athletes to run his option based scheme, until he did, the rest is history.
 

YUENGLING

Junior Varsity
5 Year Member
I was going to post this response to the thread about Herman Edwards vs Scott Frost at this point in their career at their positions. It ended up being very long and I thought it would be best to be scrutinized as it's own thread.

I will preface this post by saying these are simply my thoughts as someone who has not played football past the pee wee and middle school years, so my knowledge of the game is purely from observation. This is definitely not and X's and O's type of post but more of a psychological/sociological hypothesis simply based on observations and speculations.

I am very open to scrutiny, criticism, and skepticism. I just want to get other's thoughts about a simple concept that might be more complex than I/we have considered. These are just my recent thoughts after freezing my arse off in a nearly half empty stadium in freekin Minnesota!

This idea could easily be off, and my lovely partner could give you pages of examples of when I've been wrong before, but I feel that the pressure since Frost's hire has impacted the team's performance. Back to the Herm vs Frost post, there is far more pressure here at NU than ASU, and it isn't even remotely comparable. I have a very strong intuition the coaches and players have experienced this pressure ever since Frost was first hired and they are still working to manage it.

Most of us (myself included) knew that at the time of his hire Frost was our program's savior. The timing synched with Swiss precision as a coaching position came available during a time when invigorated and competent leadership had been restored. Frost's success had proven his acumen as a D1 head coach, with field accomplishments and warranted accolades. Along with him knowing the Nebraska culture and expectations, talk about a perfect match! And 99% of us (my estimation) believed that. I still do...

Frost was hired as the epitome of the Golden Child; progeny of home-grown athletic greatness, a true Nebraska prodigy, gilded in the forge of experience and wisdom exalted from the esteemed sage and Saint of Nebraska football. The intersection of education, preparation, and hubris was complete. Sir Frost was sent on his quest to awaken the great giant of football hegemony.

This may seem to be hyperbole to many, but I honestly feel this description encapsulates how many of us view Frost's return, and it may emphasize the type of pressure players are experiencing. This isn't simply an internal/external pressure, it is existential.

Transitioning into metaphor, I believe Huskerdom can at times be an extremely precise and sophisticated pressure cooker, where the compression (obsession) can enhance some ingredients while causing others to compress and deteriorate. I honestly believe the coaching staff is aware of this dynamic and is doing their best to temper the extreme external pressure with their approach, especially with their "no mistakes, just go fast and hard" mentality. As we all know, some foods are much more delicious and complete our anticipation/expectation when properly cooked under pressure... others simply fall short.

Back to this team... we saw them react and rise to the external demand during the first half of a highly anticipated and pressure-driven game against CU, a former conference foe (rival), with the added motivation of vindication for an extremely dirty play endured their leader who was victimized the previous year. This team rose to appreciate and possibly exalt that pressure to a point where they dominated the first half. To me the letdown performance of the second half depicted the exact pressure I feel is difficult for this team to manage. Beginning to fault in front of fans who sacrificed greatly to observe (judge) them could have added to the pressure they have earlier internalized, and contributed to a continuation of poor performance. I wonder if that CU game performance has had an overall lingering effect.

I really believe this team will excel once they start to focus on processes, both team and individual, and less on outcomes or expectations. If players focus on their enjoyment of the game in the present, appreciate what drew them to the game, while maintaining their personal and team goals, maybe the outcomes will fall into place. I realize that may be overly simplistic/reductionistic, but I'd entertain any discussion this long, drawn out theory could provoke :) Let's just keep focus on NE football for this discussion, as much as some have noticed I have fallen short myself. Apologies and forgiveness.
Agree Nebraska has become a pressure cooker...example Minnesota half empty stadium at night ,a 5-0 record,playing a tough western division foe and they can’t sell out. Zero pressure there but take that same game and put it in Memorial Stadium and there’s plenty of pressure. There will be pressure next week against Indiana in a packed house after a bye week.
This turnaround ( and I drank all the KoolAid) is going to take time and a ton of patience. Next season the pressure will double and pressure to win and win big will always be there.
I am old enough to remember when Dr. Tom didn’t walk on water. He couldn’t beat Oklahoma and couldn’t win the big one. His time came but he didn’t have nearly the social media pressure this team does. Husker fans are outstanding but they want to win and win big. Hopefully Frost is up to the task because I’m not sure there’s any other coach for Nebraska.
 

berryhusker

Travel Squad
15 Year Member
From what I can tell, your post is to long and I didn't bother reading 80% of it.

Also, we don't quite have the athletes to run Frosts' Offense properly, the same way TO didn't always have the athletes to run his option based scheme, until he did, the rest is history.
That's fine., I knew when I wrote it that it was way too long. I just hoped someone might read the entire message and have a thought-provoking response to provoke discussion. I honestly believe there is some validity to my hypothesis about NU's unique sense of 'pressure'.
 

HUSKER HOT SAUCE

Music Soothes My Soul
5 Year Member
That's fine., I knew when I wrote it that it was way too long. I just hoped someone might read the entire message and have a thought-provoking response to provoke discussion. I honestly believe there is some validity to my hypothesis about NU's unique sense of 'pressure'.
I don't think you are necessarily wrong, but I think/believe that when HCSF gets the athletes his system needs, we can be both 90's Nebraska, and today's Clemson and Alabama all rolled up into one. It's a tall order no doubt, but I am in this for the long haul, I always have been, and I'm not giving up now. As Husker fans, we just need to slow down, breathe, and have patience. I'm confident that we can and will do this. Nebraska, I mean, even looking at the states name sake is positive. GO BIG RED!!!
 

HuskerRef

Travel Squad
5 Year Member
Pressure exists at every big time college program. Take Georgia for example, folks down here are still melting down after losing to the Cocks. They’re hammering Kirby Smart, Jake Fromm (some think Georgia made a huge mistake letting Fields walk), and some are even throwing in the towel for this season.

So while I agree that there is pressure at Nebraska, I don’t think it’s dramatically different from other places in Power 5 football......
 
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CrabHusker

Alienating everyone, one post at a time.
5 Year Member
Pressure exists at every big time college program. Take Georgia for example, folks down are still melting down after losing to the Cocks. They’re hammering Kirby Smart, Jake Fromm (some think Georgia made a huge mistake letting Fields walk), and some are even throwing in the towel for this season.

So while I agree that there is pressure at Nebraska, I don’t think it’s dramatically different from other places in Power 5 football......
Any school that has aspirations to or a history of championship football feels the pressure. We think there’s more here than other places, but it’s not unique. We care about Nebraska so it seems that way for us. You can name P5 schools that the pressure isn’t an issue, but they aren’t football schools.
 

Seth

Better
5 Year Member
I don't have any sympathy for Frost if the pressure is truly part of the problem. Any coach who comes here knows there will be pressure, especially Frost. And uh well that what the money's for. He doesn't get paid $5M a year because the fans don't give a #$&%.

I don't know what the problem is but it doesn't reflect well on the staff. The first half of the season was disappointing. I hope they figure out some things over the bye week.
 
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Husker In Oklahoma

All Big 10
15 Year Member
Pressure is a given. This team has some mental issues and it’s seemingly passed from coach to coach. Like a bleepin curse or something. I don’t know what it is, but it’s still here. Sloppy, undisciplined football. Correct that, and you’ll start seeing some wins. It’s seemingly a huge thing to overcome, as we have all witnessed.
 

coherbie

Booster of Substance
15 Year Member
Seems like a lot of folks are suffering from Hyper Football Tension / High Pigskin Pressure ... try moving around a little more, lay off sugar & maybe some oatmeal for breakfast. :wink:

This isn't close to the teams a lot of us grew up knowing, hasn't been for a long time. Like it or not, it's going to take awhile for these youngsters to go from believing they can.. to knowing they can... to expecting they will - succeed.

DONU might win more than 4 games for the first time since 2016 - if that's not a sobering thought, seek some medication :Chillpill:

baby steps, GBR!!
 
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wcbsas

All Legend
15 Year Member
Pressure exists at every big time college program. Take Georgia for example, folks down here are still melting down after losing to the Cocks. They’re hammering Kirby Smart, Jake Fromm (some think Georgia made a huge mistake letting Fields walk), and some are even throwing in the towel for this season.

So while I agree that there is pressure at Nebraska, I don’t think it’s dramatically different from other places in Power 5 football......
Comparing Nebraska and Georgia is different. Having NC aspirations is different than wanting a return to relevance. Challenging Alabama/Florida for the SEC championship and a playoff berth is different than wanting to win the B1G West.

Is suspect (hope) that someday NU will return to the scrutiny of having to play in a high pressure game. That's a different kind of pressure. I would reword your thesis and take out pressure and substitute "fish bowl".

Nebraska players and coaches live in a fish bowl where everywhere they go and everything they do gets analysed. Imagine Maurice Washington having to see/hear that his sideline demeanor is being over analyzed. I wonder how many for sale signs have been planted on SF's lawn this season?

In my viewpoint the issue is simply that there is a dearth of upperclassmen in our 2-deep. Those that are there are not the high caliber 4 star recruits that were landed 3 and 4 years ago.
 

SavageHusker

Red Shirt
2 Year Member
Pressure is a given. This team has some mental issues and it’s seemingly passed from coach to coach. Like a bleepin curse or something. I don’t know what it is, but it’s still here. Sloppy, undisciplined football. Correct that, and you’ll start seeing some wins. It’s seemingly a huge thing to overcome, as we have all witnessed.
There are some mental issues. I also think Scott and staff are having to evolve to the BIG. When Scott was hired I said I thought his offense would eventually evolve to something a bit closer to what TO ran.

The other thing, this team is SORELY missing senior leadership.

And of course, lots of holes to fill and quite a bit of inexperience.

Things will get better, just not a quickly as we had hoped. Keep the faith.
 

wcbsas

All Legend
15 Year Member
Seems like a lot of folks are suffering from Hyper Football Tension / High Pigskin Pressure ... try moving around a little more, lay off sugar & maybe some oatmeal for breakfast. :wink:

This isn't close to the teams a lot of us grew up knowing, hasn't been for a long time. Like it or not, it's going to take awhile for these youngsters to go from believing they can.. to knowing they can... to expecting they will - succeed.

DONU might win more than 4 games for the first time since 2016 - if that's not a sobering thought, seek some medication :Chillpill:

baby steps, GBR!!
I would guess the vast majority of us did not expect a step backwards from last year ... at this point in the season it feels like this team is worse than last year's team ... I believe that is what all of the consternation and hand-wringing is about.

Yes - our record through 7 games is better than last year, but the "feel" of this team is that it is not as good as last year.
 

wcbsas

All Legend
15 Year Member
Agree Nebraska has become a pressure cooker...example Minnesota half empty stadium at night ,a 5-0 record,playing a tough western division foe and they can’t sell out. Zero pressure there but take that same game and put it in Memorial Stadium and there’s plenty of pressure. There will be pressure next week against Indiana in a packed house after a bye week.
This turnaround ( and I drank all the KoolAid) is going to take time and a ton of patience. Next season the pressure will double and pressure to win and win big will always be there.
I am old enough to remember when Dr. Tom didn’t walk on water. He couldn’t beat Oklahoma and couldn’t win the big one. His time came but he didn’t have nearly the social media pressure this team does. Husker fans are outstanding but they want to win and win big. Hopefully Frost is up to the task because I’m not sure there’s any other coach for Nebraska.
I do believe if social media and the environment that exists today was around back in the late '70s and early '80s that TO would not have survived at NU.
 
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