Cam Jurgens

Cam Jurgens registered a throw of 59-3 to win his third state title in the shot put.

Everyone was waiting on Scott Frost.

He had finished prelim throws in the Class C shot put. Then he hustled into Burke Stadium for the 300-meter hurdles preliminaries, then he qualified for the finals.

These are the logistical headaches you face when you’re one of the best prep athletes in state history.

When Frost returned to the shot put ring May 21, 1993, more than 300 people were waiting to watch his final three throws.

“I couldn’t believe it,” Frost said later. “I was expecting only a few fans would be there.”

He tried to find his rhythm again. First throw: Not good enough to beat Eric Anderson. The Lincoln Southeast lineman was on the board at 57-2.

“Use your legs, Scott,” his mother, Carol, yelled.

Then came the second throw: 57-6½. All-class gold.

His final throw, 58-9½, didn’t meet his personal record of 61-1½. But it was good enough for a celebration.

“I wish I could have gotten 60 again,” Frost said. “Once I got the lead, it was a relief. It was easy to explode on the last one.”

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That happened 25 years ago this week, the final weekend of a spectacular high school career. Frost wasn’t planning to compete again in Nebraska; he had accepted a scholarship to play football for Bill Walsh at Stanford.

Of course, plans changed in January 1995 and Frost returned to help Tom Osborne win his third national championship. His track exploits are mostly forgotten now.

On Friday morning at Burke Stadium, one of Frost’s top recruits, Cam Jurgens, stepped into the shot put ring with an ailing ankle and unleashed a throw of 59-3.

Until a couple weeks ago, Jurgens wondered if he would be healthy enough to defend his 2016 and ’17 golds. Districts was his first meet of the season.

“This week has probably been the worst week of practice I’ve ever had in my life,” Jurgens said. “But state track, you got a lot of adrenaline when you get here, so you either rise up or rise down.”

Jurgens wraps up his career Saturday with the discus. Then Tuesday, he’s off to Lincoln to “start grinding” for football. It was mentioned to Jurgens that his 59-3 ¾ was six inches better than Frost’s throw 25 years ago.

“I’ll have to call and say, ‘Oh shoot, I beat you with a bum ankle,’” Jurgens said.

Frost might hold the trump card in that conversation. One day after winning the shot put in 1993, he won gold in a second event in Class C: 110 hurdles in 14.67 seconds.

How many athletes are capable of that double?

Reporter - Sports

Dirk writes stories and columns about Husker football in addition to covering general assignments and enterprise for The World-Herald. Follow him on Twitter @dirkchatelain. Phone: 402-444-1062.

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