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Dave Weaver, Associated Press
In this photo taken, Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012, Nebraska baseball coach Darin Erstad, talks during an interview in the team's locker room in Lincoln, Neb. New Nebraska coach Darin Erstad loves it when people say he can't do something. Erstad knows some in college baseball don't think he's qualified for a plumb job after having spent only one year as a volunteer assistant. He says his 14 years in the major leagues should count for something. But rather than lash out at the naysayers, he said, he'll work to prove them wrong.

LINCOLN, Neb. — Darin Erstad says he knows there are people who doubt his qualifications to coach Nebraska's baseball team. He plans to prove them wrong.

He said his 14 years in the major leagues should count for something. His new job starts in earnest Friday when Division I teams begin practice.

Erstad takes over a program that struggled in the Big 12 the past three years. The Cornhuskers are beginning their first season in the Big Ten, and they should contend immediately.

Erstad thrives on challenges. He grew up hearing that a kid from a small town in North Dakota shouldn't dare to dream of playing in the major leagues. Erstad became a two-time All-Star and won a World Series with the Los Angeles Angels.