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Carl Pelini, Pete Rekstis Resign After Reportedly Attending Event with Marijuana

USA Today
Tim KeeneyContributor IJanuary 10, 2017

Florida Atlantic Owls football head coach Carl Pelini and defensive coordinator Pete Rekstis resigned on Wednesday afternoon, a move that will be effective immediately.     

Athletic director Pat Chun, via the Twitter feed of FAU's athletic program, made the news official at a press conference:

Chun's full statement can be read on the school's athletics website:

It is with profound disappointment and sadness that I announce the resignation of Florida Atlantic University Head Football Coach Carl Pelini and Defensive Coordinator Pete Rekstis. They tendered their resignations to me late this morning after I confronted both coaches with reports relating to their use of illegal drugs.

On Monday, I was made aware of these concerns and I immediately reported the allegations to our General Counsel. The University acted quickly and decisively to follow up and take action that is in the best interests of our student-athletes and the University overall. 

UPDATE: Tuesday, Nov. 26, at 11:40 p.m. ET 

ESPN's Brett McMurphy reports that drug use was not the official cause of Pelini's firing:

---End of Update---

UPDATE: Thursday, Nov. 7, at 4:56 p.m. ET

It appears as if this story isn't dead just yet according to Bret McMurphy of ESPN.com:

---End of Update---

 

UPDATE: Saturday, Nov. 2, at 3:30 p.m. ET

From Dieter Kurtenbach of the Sun Sentinel:

---End of Update---


UPDATE: Friday, Nov. 1, at 6:30 p.m. ET

From Dieter Kurtenbach of the Sun Sentinel:

---End of Update---

Original Text:

Jeremy Fowler of CBS Sports reports that the drug use wasn't the only issue that factored into the firing. 

Florida Atlantic learned about "other violations of university rules" with Carl Pelini in light of his resignation Wednesday over illegal drug use, athletic director Pat Chun told CBSSports.com.

FAU received multiple reports of drug use and violations of university policy early this week, Chun said, leading to the resignation of the Owls coach, as first reported by ESPN. Defensive coordinator Pete Rekstis also resigned for his involvement in the school's investigation.

When asked about the exact nature of the other violations, Chun declined comment because the investigation was a human resources matter.

"Once people came forward, once we had facts, what I went to Carl and Pete with were facts," Chun said.

Dieter Kurtenbach of the Sun Sentinel provided some additional details:

Chun announced offensive coordinator Brian Wright will replace Pelini for the time being:

Steve Berkowitz of USA Today reports the school may take action against Pelini:

Earlier on Wednesday, ESPN's Brett McMurphy broke news that Pelini and Rekstis reportedly attended a social event where marijuana was used.

Chun confirmed that no one else—players or staff—was involved:

Pelini, who is the older brother of Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini, served as the Cornhuskers' defensive coordinator before accepting the head coaching job with FAU in December of 2011.

His first job as a head coach went poorly, as he led the Owls to a 5-15 record in less than two full seasons. The team is currently 2-6 overall and 1-4 during conference play in its first year as a Conference USA member. 

He showed real promise at Nebraska, building the Cornhuskers into one of the best defensive teams in the nation, but it's safe to say this entire situation will serve as a significant setback in his career. 

Rekstis was named defensive coordinator in March of 2012 after stints with Kent State and Miami University. 

The interim head coach Wright also came on with the new staff in 2012. He previously served as the offensive coordinator for Youngstown State and Montana State, and has no head coaching experience at this level. 

He'll get a stiff test in his debut at the helm, as FAU hosts 6-2 Tulane, which is currently tied with Rice atop the C-USA West division. 

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