I posted this Diary entry back in 2016, on the eve of the Michigan-UCF game in which we were outhit and yet somehow managed to squeak by, 51-14. With Frost returning to the Big House, I thought it was worth a re-post. For those who think our hatred of Frost is overblown or unwarranted, here's the full story. We hate him for good reason, and always will.
This has been mentioned numerous times in other posts, so it's probably worthy of its own thread. Many of you might be too young to know the story, and others may have forgotten it, so you're wondering: Why is there so much animosity among the Michigan fan base toward UCF head coach Scott Frost?
Here's the short version: Because he cost us a unanimous national championship in 1997, and he did it by denigrating Michigan.
Here's the longer story, and exactly what Frost said. The 1997 season was the last one before the BCS came in, so national champions were determined solely by the AP (media) and USA Today (coaches) polls. Michigan finished the season on Jan. 1, 1998, by beating Washington State in the Rose Bowl, 21-16, to finish 12-0.
Nebraska finished the season on Jan. 2, 1998, by beating Tennessee and Peyton Manning in the Orange Bowl, 42-17, to finish 13-0.
In both the AP and USA Today polls, Michigan was a clear No. 1 heading into the bowl games. This was primarily because Nebraska had to cheat to beat a very mediocre Missouri team late in the season. A Nebraska player admittedly kicked the ball in the end zone to keep it alive for a TD, and the refs didn't call him for it. (That's illegal.) The play became known as the "Flea Kicker," and it's very famous. Look it up.
In any case, Michigan's season-long body of work was better, which is why, following the Missouri game, pollsters vaulted Michigan ahead of Nebraska. It should have stayed that way following the bowl games, but then Nebraska quarterback Scott Frost stepped in.
He knew that the AP was never going to sway from Michigan, but following the Orange Bowl, he made an impassioned plea to the coaches to give Tom Osborne (who was retiring) a national championship as a going-away present.
And this is the important part - and why we hate Scott Frost: He did it by denigrating Michigan. This is exactly what he said on the night of Jan. 2, 1998 (emphasis mine):
"So, it's up to the coaches. I'm so proud of this team and Coach Osborne, I don't want to see him go out without a championship. I basically have two points for the coaches:
"One, if you can look yourself in the mirror and say if your job depended on playing either Michigan or Nebraska to keep your job, who would you rather play? You watched the Rose Bowl and the Orange Bowl. Michigan won with a controversial play at the end. We took apart the third-ranked team in the country.
"The second point I have is: I can't see how any coach outside the Big Ten or the Pac-10 would vote for Michigan. Because if somebody from North Carolina, Florida State, West Virginia, Notre Dame--wherever it might--if they were undefeated and won the Alliance bowl game, they would expect to share the national title.
"I don't know who would win the game if we played Michigan. I think I know. I think all you guys know. The thing I'd like to say is: Who would be favored?
"I'd like to see the line on that game, because I think it would be seven, 10, 14 points (in Nebraska's favor). Any time that it's that way and you vote the other way, you've got to be crazy."
So, that's why we don't like Scott Frost, and that's why we want to see Harbaugh hang 70 on him on Saturday. Scott Frost whizzed a fastball at our head 19 years ago, and now he's finally coming up to the plate. It's time for payback.
Elephants and Wolverines never forget.