Bo Pelini's future as head coach of the Nebraska Cornhuskers is shaky at best, but it's his team's horrid play on the defensive end that will lead to his ultimate demise.
Things got really ugly today as a profanity-laced tirade by Pelini was discovered and released in a piece by Dom Cosentino of Deadspin (NSFW). In the audio recording from 2011, Pelini can be heard bashing fans and in the worst way possible.
Here is what Nebraska chancellor Harvey Perlman and athletic director Shawn Eichorst had to say about it, per the school's official site:
Harvey Perlman, Chancellor:
"I am aware of the publication of Coach Pelini's comments, I am disappointed and in discussions with Shawn Eichorst about addressing the issue."
Shawn Eichorst, Director of Athletics:
“I am disheartened and disappointed by the 2011 comments published today attributed to Coach Pelini about our dedicated and passionate fans and supporters. I have spoken with Chancellor Perlman and I have addressed the situation with Bo and expressed our deep concern."
While that will further sour his tenure in Nebraska, it's really the Cornhuskers' lack of defense that has gotten the ball rolling on his potential firing. Pelini has gotten criticism from every angle and that was before this embarrassing and shameful piece of audio came out.
After a 41-21 loss to the UCLA Bruins on Saturday that saw the Cornhuskers blow a 21-10 halftime lead by allowing an astounding 28 points in the third quarter, former Nebraska quarterback Tommie Frazier took to Twitter to rip Pelini's coaching:
After letting it sink in for about 4 hours I still struggling. It's time to get rid of the (cont) http://t.co/fqMgFHZWQl— Tommie Frazier (@TouchdownTommie) September 15, 2013
After letting it sink in for about 4 hours I still struggling. It's time to get rid of the defensive play caller, the Dc, lb dl and db coaches. I hate saying this but this crap is getting old. How in the hell do you not make adjustments or put your players in the position to compete? If this is what is going to happen for the remainder of the season, count me out. I don't care if we lose a game but the way we are losing is just not what #Nebraska fans deserve. I have fought, bled, and cried over this program. I didn't do all that for the program to become what it has today. Time for change! I will comment about the offense this week on Tommie's X's and O's. Trust me you don't want to miss it. #Huskers
Frazier's comments show that there is a mutiny going on in Cornhusker land. Fans and alumni alike are getting sick and tired of Pelini's poor defensive unit, which also allowed an embarrassing 34 points and 602 yards of total offense in Week 1 against the Wyoming Cowboys.
Expectations were high for Pelini after he enjoyed immense success as the defensive coordinator of the LSU Tigers' stud defense from 2005-07 that ranked no worse than No. 3 in the country in overall defense.
In fact, Pelini even had success in an earlier stint with the Cornhuskers as their defensive coordinator back in 2003.
But those days seem to be long gone and now his coaching job is very much in jeopardy. The fact that his tirade against Nebraska fans came out now was simply bad timing and its more salt on a wound that was already open.
If Pelini does get fired, it will be because of his team's play on the field and not his own comments off of it. Had Pelini's defense played up to par and Nebraska was winning games, Pelini's past comments wouldn't mean a whole heck of a lot.
Winning cures all in the college game and Pelini would have gotten off much easier if Nebraska was an elite program. But they aren't at the moment, and that makes what Pelini said that much worse to take if you're a Cornhusker fan.
There is little justification for allowing Pelini to keep his job at this point. His lackluster coaching is no doubt the cake and his vocal diarrhea is the icing on top.