If you thought a move to the FCS world would simmer Bo Pelini, think again. The former head coach of Nebraska is still raging as head coach of Youngstown State, as Saturday showed in epic fashion.
Here’s the situation. Youngstown State trailed North Dakota State, 27-24, late in the fourth quarter. The Penguins took the ball at its own 30-yard line with a chance to move down field for a tie or perhaps a win against one of the true powers of the FCS. With 29 seconds remaining on the clock and a shot a game-tying field goal about to be had, Pelini’s temper got in the way and drew not one, but two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. Pelini was upset over a pass interference penalty on a previous series when Youngstown State was on defense. North Dakota State went on to score a touchdown on that drive.
“They didn’t like the way I was talking to them,” Pelini said of the officials after the game.
Pelini had plenty of reasons to feel hot under the collar. His Youngstown State team blew a 24-10 lead int eh fourth quarter for the loss.
Former Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini is settling into his new job as head coach of the Youngstown State Penguins. The step down in profile among college coaching jobs is a refreshing change of pace for the hot-tempered Pelini, and it could be just what he needs the most.
Ralph Russo of the Associated Press wrote a solid profile of Pelini today, taking a look at how Pelini is adjusting to the life outside of the bright spotlight that comes with coaching a big time college football program as storied as Nebraska. The pressure may not be quite as high in Youngstown, but it is still a state with tremendous football pride and the job is still similar in many respects.
“Coaching’s coaching,” Pelini explained. “This whole step back thing … You coach where you’re coaching. I wouldn’t be opposed to ever coaching high school ball. The challenges are always there. They’re different at different places.”
Pelini also was given a chance to comment on the audio recording of a meeting with Nebraska players Pelini held following his dismissal by the university. In it, Pelini is heard using some strong language and criticizing Nebraska athletics director Shawn Eichorst.
“I think it’s sad that it came out,” Pelini said. “That’s what’s wrong with that place.”
Nebraska and Pelini are going their separate ways now. Pelini has taken his family home to Youngstown, where he will also be charged with resurrecting a once dominant FCS program back to national relevance on an annual basis. Pelini has also added his brother, Carl Pelini, to the coaching staff. Meanwhile, Nebraska moves forward with a new head coach on the opposite polarity of Pelini, former Oregon State head coach Mike Riley.